“You cannot make people learn. You can only provide the right conditions for learning to happen.”
According to Statistics South Africa, children constitute 40% of the South African Population, with just over 60% of them living in households who have an income of less than R650 a month. What these staggering statistics indicate, is that children in South Africa, are disproportionately affected by poverty.
Food insecurity remains a major concern within these communities, as the South African National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey found that, in urban areas, 28% of households are at risk of hunger, while 26% are already experiencing hunger.
In the Philippi Horticultural Area (PHA), where there are several informal settlements, these statistics are exacerbated. The vast majority of households face dire food insecurity, due to the fact that many of the adults are not only unemployed, but unemployable due to a skills deficit. Furthermore, the unemployment in these communities has increased amidst COVID19, where many of the adults have lost their jobs due to closure of their places of work.
These poverty-stricken households lack money to buy food and are unable to produce their own food. They are constrained by the inability to secure employment or to generate income, and are particularly vulnerable to economic shocks.
Based on our needs assessment in these communities we have identified the following challenges:
- Food Insecurity
- Lack of relevant skills to find employment in the current economic climate
- Lack of schooling (especially Early Childhood Development), as many children of school foing age have never attended an ECD or are not educationally ready for school despite being of age.
- Lack of recreational and skills based activities for children (specifically in relation to Internet and Computers).