Swartland social development policy and strategy
ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The research question answered by this study is what policy and strategy would give the necessary direction to Swartland Municipality’s (SM’s) social development programmes to maximise its impact on the social well-being of the community? The motivation for the study is the need to prioritise social development projects in order to improve effectiveness and efficiency in this field. The methodology used was a qualitative study by means of a conceptual analysis of the term social development, a literature study of international, national and local legislation and policies as well as group interviews with internal and external stakeholders. Social development was defined for the purposes of this study as the process of strengthening the relationships/ partnerships and linkages between people, resources and/or systems within the scope of poverty reduction, expansion of employment opportunities and social integration, with the goal to achieve well-being for individuals, groups and/or communities. Furthermore a literature study explored relevant legislation and policy documents to give clarity on the municipality’s role of social development. Main findings were that the SA Constitution as supreme law, clearly states the municipal objective is to promote social development and states four functions that relate to social development namely child facilities, basic infrastructure, public amenities and sports facilities. Furthermore social development functions in all municipal departments need to co-ordinate to maximise social development resources. Lastly the municipality’s social development programmes must be supplementary and supportive to the work of the Department of Social Development. Furthermore, engagements were held with internal and external stakeholders of Swartland Municipality and the strategic direction was determined by means of a vision, mission and strategic focus areas. The vision identified is: We build and create sustainable social development partnerships with all our people for strengthening the social fabric of the Swartland community. The social development mission is: We initiate, build and promote social development opportunities with the focus on sustainability, which specifically refers to financial viability in the long term, forming partnerships with the community and service providers, not harming the environment and operating within legal powers and functions. Five strategic focus areas flowing from the vision and mission were identified. To promote collaboration and co-ordination is the pivotal focus area. Social development has to be co-ordinated by means of a social development forum represented of all sectors (government, NGO, faith-based, business, agriculture). The other focus areas were: promoting child development/establishing child facilities, lobbying for the vulnerable, facilitating access to the economy and promoting youth development. The impact of service delivery according to the five focus areas must be measured in totality by means of the Human Development Index and reflected in the integrated development plan.