Private sector – we need you!
The Western Cape Department of Social Development recognises the critical work done by our partners in the Victim Empowerment sector, which focuses on victims of Gender-Based Violence, with R 62 866 000 allocated to the sector this financial year. This was among the only programmes in the Department that did not experience budget cuts this year. But despite not incurring budget cuts, the sector has experienced a significant rise in operational costs.
“We appeal to the private sector to come on board and assist Non-Profit Organisations who provide this critical service. We cannot have facilities closing, as it would leave more victims at risk,” says Provincial Minister of Social Development Sharna Fernandez.
Minister Fernandez adds: “The Department has opened six new Gender-Based Violence shelters during 2021/22 and huge government investments were made towards the plight of GBV victims in the Western Cape. But government alone can only do so much. The Department of Social Development, like many other government sectors, is facing financial constraints and we once again appeal to the private sector to also get involved to empower women and children in the shelters and strengthen this crucial sector.”
The DSD funds 26 shelters in the province through its Victim Empowerment Programme. This breaks down to a total of:
• 49 emergency beds (accommodation up to 14 days),
• 400 Stage 1 beds (accommodation up to 3 months), and
• 64 Stage 2 beds (accommodation up to 1 year).
More than R34 million was transferred to shelters during the last financial year. The funding model for the shelters has improved significantly over the past 5 years, as the unit cost (cost per bed per month) has increased by 42%. The funding model of the VEP shelters consists of:
• a unit cost per bed in the shelter,
• post funding for a social worker to ensure that services are at the agreed standard, and
• a further contribution towards the salary of 3 house mothers per shelter.
• This also includes support towards health, safety, and security along with a contribution towards skills development of shelter residents.
The VEP transfer budget for the 2022/2023 financial year is R 62 866 000, of which 52% is spent on shelter services.
The costs for services are standardized across shelters. These are linked to how many people are housed in the shelters as well as which services they offer. The Department has a three-year funding cycle (the current cycle ends in 2023/24). There are conditions under which organisations may request additional funding outside of that period. To do so, they must apply to the programme office and include the necessary documents such as business plans, service, cost projections, and audited financial statements. Funding in general is also determined by the available overall budget.
The public can access information around funding to all the NGOs the DSD supports on our website as part of the annual report.
Details of Victim Empowerment Programme funding can be found on page 26 and 27 on the link below:
Private sector – we need you!