Cape Town – Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini has indicated that her department’s major responsibility remains that of providing social security to the vulnerable.
She said that over the Medium-Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) period, expenditure was projected to rise to R122 billion, at an average annual rate of eight percent.
The increase was mainly because of the extension of the Child Support Grant to eligible children below 18 years, she said.
Dlamini’s department would transfer R6.1 billion to the South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) for the disbursement of the grants, the minister said.
She addressed the media on Wednesday ahead of her Budget Vote Speech to Parliament’s National Council of Provinces.
The department has allocated an additional R2 billion for the current financial year and R3 billion in the 2012/2013 for a feasibility study for provincial welfare services.
Dlamini said that R9.5 million in the current financial year and R10.7 million in the 2012/2013 period had been earmarked for the establishment and maintenance of accreditation systems.
It would also be used to “develop and maintain probation case management and register children for diversion programmes,” she added.
Over the MTEF period, Social Development would recruit and train 10 000 child and youth care workers to support child-headed families.
To date, over 5 500 students had received scholarships to study social work at various higher learning institutions.
The minister said R244 million had been set aside to support 4 400 students and to further provide 1 000 new scholarships.
The scholarship programme had produced over 2 000 graduates, who had been “absorbed in all nine provinces to bolster the provision of welfare services.”
In the fights against HIV and Aids, Dlamini said they had allocated R43.3 million to the non-profit organization LoveLife for “prevention programmes targeting youth in rural areas and farming communities.” – Francis Hweshe, BuaNews