Winter is an especially hard time for people living on the streets. Consequently, there is an additional burden on the organisations that assist them. The city wants to help these groups as they cope with increased demand for shelters and assistance when temperatures drop, so that homeless people can access warm bedding, food, and toiletries.
To this end, the City of Cape Town’s Social Development Directorate is allocating R450 000 of support to be shared between seven organisations that are part of the winter readiness campaign for street people this year. This support will be provided in the form of blankets, food, mattresses, toiletries and cleaning materials.
This programme will allow for the provision of an additional 115 bed spaces and 40 Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) job opportunities to the homeless. The seven recipients applied for assistance during this busy season.
Every applying organisation was rigorously vetted and assessed, and site inspections were performed. This was to ensure that all of the successful partners had overnight facilities that comply with the relevant health and safety requirements.
“The City’s EPWP aims to create employment opportunities for those residents who are in need of financial relief,” said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety,Security and Social Services, Alderman JP Smith. “At the same time, it facilitates the development of practical work experience, and in this instance, it will alleviate the load on night shelters.”
A memorandum of agreement was signed between the city and the respective organisations this week to ensure that all parties comply with their obligations.
“Although this is just a fraction of what is needed, it’s an example of how the city works with external parties to make a difference in people’s lives. This is in line with the Organisational Development and Transformation Plan which focuses on building integrated communities through partnering with non-governmental organisations and businesses,” said Alderman Smith.
He commended the many workers and volunteers who give their time in the city’s homeless shelters. ‘They provide constant care to some of Cape Town’s most vulnerable residents,’ said Alderman JP Smith.
The organisations that received aid are:
– Elim Night Shelter 47 Third Avenue, Elsies River
– Happy Valley Home Palace Hill Road, Simon’s Town
– Mould, Empower, Serve 3 Davis Street, Bellville
– Oasis Reach for Your Dream 28 Schaapkraal Road, Philippi
– Somerset West Night Shelter 71 Church Street, Somerset West
– Tygerberg Association of Street People 36 Charl Malan Street, Bellville
– Ubuntu Circle of Courage 16 Douglas Crescent, The Hague, Delft The City would also like to remind the public of its Give Responsibly Campaign which encourages residents to help responsibly in ways which assist street people in the long term. Do not give hand-outs directly to street people. Instead, please donate to organisations and shelters that assist in sustainable and meaningful ways.
Contact the city’s toll-free number for more information or to assist: 0800 872 201