Academic journal article Perspectives in Education

Resilience of the Socioeducational Afterschool and Community Intervention Dropin Centre

Academic journal article Perspectives in Education

Resilience of the Socioeducational Afterschool and Community Intervention Dropin Centre

Article excerpt

1.Introduction

The South African government inherited poorly resourced black townships and residential areas from the apartheid government. Policies and programmes on redress were introduced. These included the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, the Social Grant Programme administered by the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA), no fee-paying schools (Quintile 4), agriculture support programmes, the municipality rebate to indigent households and the Reconstruction and Development Programme (RDP) (Aliber, 2003; The Presidency, Republic of South Africa, 2014). The post-apartheid report by the Presidency confirms that much progress has been made towards equity and the dismantling of apartheid policies (The Presidency, Republic of South Africa, 2014). It is important to note that the policies on redress focuses on dismantling colonial and apartheid policies (decolonising) and liberating the South African population.

Many South Africans continue to experience social and economic adversity. The most recent poverty trends report by Statistics South Africa indicates poverty levels of approximately 24% of the population. A poverty trends report conducted in 2015 by Statistics South Africa shows that 13.8 million South Africans live below the food poverty line (FPL), which amounts to R441 income per person per month (Stats SA, 2017a: 14). The statistical survey conducted in 2015 showed that, 30.4 (55.5%) million South Africans live below the upper-bound poverty line (UBPL, equalling to R992 per person per month); while 21.9 (40%) million living below the lower bound poverty line (LBPL equalling to R647) (Stats SA, 2017a: 14). South Africa has a population of 56.52 million people (Stats SA, 2017a). Across racial lines, statistics show that between 2011 and 2015, the proportions of black Africans and coloureds living below the LBPL in South Africa increased from 43.4% to 47.1% for blacks and from 20.2% to 23.3% for the coloured population. The government of South Africa instituted "social wage" programmes to alleviate poverty in homes of vulnerable population groups. The social wage programme include provision of "free primary health care; no-fee paying schools; social protection (most notably old-age grants and child support grants); RDP housing; and the provision of free basic services (namely water, electricity and sanitation) to poor households" (Stats SA, 2017a: 8). The impact of the social wage over poverty reduction is seen with the reduction of poverty levels from 17.9% in 2001 to 8.0% in 2011, which then fell further to 7.0% by 2016 (Stats SA, 2017a: 9). The social grants (old age and child support grant) counted among the "social wage" programmes (Stats SA, 2017a) instituted by the government of South Africa meant to alleviate poverty, has instead turned into the only source of income for most families. Considering the above statistics, most families experience adverse poverty and require government poverty alleviation programmes to bring dignity into their lives.

Owing to the entrenched inequalities of apartheid, even with continuous investment in infrastructure, the upgrading of community resources and quality municipal service delivery, much is required to actualise equity, equality and redress. Many households still experience the impact of poverty that emanates from the apartheid years. Research about pre-apartheid South Africa attests to inequality and poverty (Aliber, 2003; Armstrong, Lekezwa & Siebrits, 2008; Leibbrandt et al., 2010) and human rights violations (Kaminer et al., 2001; Kagee, 2004) experienced by South African black, coloured and Indian people.

Social support programmes serve to intervene on existing risk and adversity, and build resilience in the community. Such programmes provide an impetus to address particular needs within the community, as well as to prevent risk or the escalation of risk. The Department of Social Development (DSD) uses such programmes to implement policy. …

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