This seems like a great programme…
Government has announced that over 3 000 job opportunities have been created for poor and vulnerable communities through its Food for Waste Programme. The programme is aimed at assisting municipalities to provide waste collection services where they are unable to do so, to create job opportunities, fight hunger and poverty, and to promote a clean environment, recycling, waste reduction and reuse. The programme is currently being rolled out in nine provinces in 30 municipalities and has so far managed to create over 3 000 job opportunities. It was initiated and implemented by the Department of Public Works in partnership with the Independent Development Trust as part of the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP), under the environmental sector.
Explaining how the programme works during a Social Protection and Community Development Cluster briefing on Tuesday, Public Works spokesperson, Lucky Mochalibane, said members of the community collected waste, which they handed over to their local offices in exchange for food vouchers. He explained that waste was weighed and community members were provided with food vouchers accordingly. Government was running the programme in collaboration with local grocery stores and food chains.
Meanwhile, with the successful implementation of the first phase of the EPWP, government plans to implement the second EPWP at an advanced stage, said Social Development Minister, Bathabile Dlamini. She said since the beginning of the current financial year, more than 308 000 work opportunities had been created through the programme, with most of the work created in infrastructure.
Dlamini said measures outlined in phase two will refocus government’s resources to ensure expansion of further job opportunities in other programmes including community safety, Mass Participation in Sport, Khari Gude Mass Literacy Project, School Nutrition Programme, Cemetery Management Programme and waste management.
She further noted that the recent Cabinet Lekgotla identified the Community Works Programme as one of the key job creation and service delivery improvement programmes.
“Between April 2010 and March this year, the programme created 89 689 jobs across 45 municipalities covering 417 wards throughout the country. These measures are indicative of the proactive strategic approach the cluster has taken by investing in labour intensive programmes to boost job creation.