Exploring the local economic development initiatives for unemployed rural women in Mandeni municipality

Dhlodhlo, Lindelani Mkhumbuzi (2010-12)

Thesis (MPA (Public Management and Planning))--University of Stellenbosch, 2010.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Unemployment and poverty have an adverse effect on society and proactive and sustainable measures are needed to deal with it. Women and rural women in particular, form the most affected group when it comes to unemployment and poverty. Illiteracy and underdevelopment are the major barriers to the advancement of unemployed rural women. Women in rural settings in most cases rely on local economic development (LED) initiatives for day-to-day survival. Local government has a constitutional mandate to promote social and economic development in order to improve the quality life for the citizens of South Africa. This mandate has been followed by a number of policy documents and guidelines for LED to enable local authorities to perform this task efficiently. The concept of LED is a micro approach in that it deals directly with local issues of economic development through partnerships between communities, business, workers, development agencies and governmental agencies to promote local economy. There is a pressing need for local government to be proactive in dealing with issues of rural development and in supporting LED initiatives of rural women. The literature review covers the theoretical framework of LED through examining both international and domestic practices. The review deals with the history of LED, the LED concept, development theories, evaluation of the practices of LED, as well as participatory development, pro-poor LED, and tourism as a response to LED. It further assesses the contextual framework of LED with particular attention to South African policy and practice. The state of LED in South Africa is discussed, together with the way forward for LED. The study provides an investigation into the background of the Mandeni Municipality by looking at the demographic factors and geographical location of the area. The state of LED in Mandeni Municipality is highlighted, together with LED strategy for the Municipality, and major future development associated with LED. The study clearly portrays that there is a gap between the LED initiatives of the unemployed rural women and the Municipality. The strategic location of the Municipality facilitates future economic prospects for the area and new development proposals associated with LED. It is clear from the LED Unit structure in Mandeni Municipality that there is a lack of capacity to deal with the LED challenges and local economic initiatives. From the literature review it is clear that women are critical role players in LED because of their ability to initiate community-based economic development projects and to perform multi-task activities. It is evident that strong partnerships with various LED stakeholders working directly with low-income communities can play a meaningful role in alleviating poverty, and in the creation of employment.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Werkloosheid en armoede het vandag .n nadelige invloed op die gemeenskap en proaktiewe en volhoubare maatreels is nodig om dit hok te slaan. Wat werkloosheid en armoede betref, val vroue onder die groepe wat die meeste geraak word, veral plattelandse vroue. Ongeletterdheid en onderontwikkeling is die vernaamste hindernisse vir die vooruitgang van werklose plattelandse vroue. Vroue in .n plattelandse milieu steun sterk op plaaslike ekonomiese ontwikkelingsinisiatiewe vir hulle dag tot dag oorlewing. Plaaslike regering het .n konstitusionele mandaat om maatskaplike en ekonomiese ontwikkeling te bevorder ten einde die lewenskwaliteit van burgers van Suid-Afrika te verbeter. .n Enorme behoefte bestaan dat die plaaslike regering proaktief moet optree wanneer aangeleenthede rakende plattelandse ontwikkeling en ondersteuning van plaaslike ekonomiese ontwikkelings-inisiatiewe vir plattelandse vroue aangespreek word. Op beleidsvlak het Suid-Afrika sterk klem geplaas op plaaslike ekonomiese ontwikkeling as maatreel om sosio-ekonomiese toestande vir plattelandse gemeenskappe te verbeter. Plattelandse vroue staar egter reuse uitdagings rondom onderontwikkeling in die gesig. Die groot probleem vir hierdie navorsing is dat die Mandeni munisipaliteit se plaaslike ekonomiese ontwikkelingsprogramme, wat vroue as voorheen gemarginaliseerde en kwesbare groepe teiken, onsigbaar is. Plaaslike ekonomiese ontwikkelingsinisiatiewe geskied in isolasie van die munisipaliteit en daar blyk maar .n powere vennootskap tussen die munisipaliteit en plaaslike ekonomiese ontwikkelingsinisiatiewe wat deur vroue gevoer word, te wees. Die Plaaslike Ekonomiese Ontwikkelingseenheid (LED-eenheid), wat oor .n mandaat beskik vir die implementering van plaaslike ekonomiese ontwikkelingsprogramme, het .n niksseggende rol in die bevordering van plaaslike ekonomiese ontwikkelingsprogramme vir plaaslike werklose vroue gespeel. Daarbenewens is daar baie vroue onder die bevolking van die Mandeni-munisipaliteit en die meerderheid van hulle is werkloos. Die vernaamste doelwitte van hierdie studie was om probleme te identifiseer wat die LED-eenheid gehad het met die implementering van LED-programme vir die werklose vrou en om sy vlak van deelname, in belang van die werklose plattelandse vroue, te assesseer. Die fokusgroep-metode is tydens navorsing ingespan met die insameling van data oor die twee verskillende vroueorganisasies wat plaaslike ekonomiese ontwikkelingsprojekte geinisieer het. Voorts is die onderhoud-metode tydens die studie toegepas vir die insameling van data rondom die drie munisipale amptenare en die Speaker van die munisipaliteit. Die vernaamste bevindinge van die navorsing toon duidelik dat daar .n gaping bestaan tussen LED-inisiatiewe deur die plattelandse werklose vroue en die Mandeni-munisipaliteit. Die bevindinge van die studie dui daarop dat die LED-eenheidstruktuur van die Mandeni-munisipaliteit oor onvoldoende fondse beskik en gebrek toon aan die nodige vermoe om die plaaslike ekonomiese ontwikkelingsuitdagings en plaaslike ekonomiese inisiatiewe van die werklose plattelandse vroue te hanteer. Dit is duidelik dat vroue kritiese rolspelers in plaaslike ekonomiese ontwikkeling is weens hulle vermoe om gemeenskapsgebaseerde ekonomiese ontwikkelingsprojekte te inisieer en hulle kennis om veelvuldige taakbedrywighede van stapel te laat loop. Ten slotte beveel die studie aan dat die LED-eenheid geherstruktureer word om die LED-agterstande binne die Mandeni-munisipaliteit aan te spreek, dat daar behoorlike koordinering van LED-programme moet wees, en dat die plaaslike ekonomiese ontwikkelingsinisiatiewe vir vroue sterk deur die Mandeni-munisipaliteit gesteun moet word.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/5393
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