Media briefing at the Launch of Winter Relief Programme - 9 May 2017

HOD Ms. Drinie Samson
Officials of the Department of Social Development
Esteemed Members of the Media

A country’s progress is assessed to a large extent on its ability to care and defend the rights of the most vulnerable of its citizens. This is done through programs to raise the quality of life and limit their vulnerabilities. The protection of the poor and vulnerable is a top government priority. The ANC led Government has made concerted efforts to support community based organizations to increase the reach and range of development services rendered to the Unemployed, Children, HIV infected and affected, People living with disabilities and the elderly.

We live in a world where so many have no clue about the people in need of food. I feel like so many don’t show their loving sides to those who need our help. Of course, there are a good bit of people out there who show their kindness to those in need. Just think about everyone who is worrying about when they will get their next meal.

Die nood van ons mense is groot en as die Regerende Party wil ons beweeg na ‘n situasie waar daar genoegsame kos en dienste is vir ons mense. Ons word egter beperk tot wat ons kan voorsien met die hulpbronne tot ons beskikking. Ons wil U egter die versekering gee dat ons alles menslik moontlik doen om ons mense te voorsien van die basisese noodsaaklikhede en die saamkoms vandag is een van vele ingrypings van die Regering om te voorsien waar ons kan.

The Winter Relief program forms part of the Social Relief program of the Department of Social Development, aiming at the provision of a safety net for people in distress. A total amount of Seven Million One Hundred and Forty Five Thousand Rand been allocated for this purpose in the 2017/18 financial year, of which Nine Hundred and Ninety Eight Thousand Two Hundred and Fifty Rand had been budgeted for the Winter Relief program

The Social Relief program is strengthened during the winter months, since this is the time when vulnerable people in the community is most at risk due to severe  weather conditions. The focus of the Winter Relief Program this year will be the following:

• Children living and working on the street must receive special consideration regarding the provision of meals.
• Older persons, especially those that are bedridden and might need to use disposable adult diapers.
• Men on the side of the road
• People at municipal dumps.

The following money has been made available for the Winter Relief Programme in the various Districts:

Francis Baardt receives Three hundred and Eighty Seven Thousand Six Hundred Rand. Namaqua Receives Two Hundred and Seventy Four Thousand Four Hundred Rand. John Taolo Gaetsewe and ZF Mgcawu receives One Hundred Thousand Rand each and Pixley ka Seme receives One Hundred and Twenty Thousand Rand. An amount of One Hundred and Sixty Six Thousand Two Hundred and Fifty Rand has been allocated to the Provincial office.

These amounts are but a drop in the ocean, but we stretch it to help as many people as possible. I therefore call upon the private sector to generously contribute and to support our welfare organizations and community soup kitchens.

If there is one thing that the our peoplemight be known for, it would be charitable deeds like feeding the homeless. Whether it’s a church that organizes local mission trips at soup kitchen, a youth group deciding to volunteer by making lunches and handing them out, or an individual who decides to start up a non-profit—it seems the community and business has done some things right in this area. This is not to say, of course, that there have never been problems or misdeeds within our person , of course; but what I am saying is that, stereotypically humans are known for trying to take care of the homeless. The reasons for this are really a variety: inspired by Scripture, seeing a need and wanting to fill it, movement by the Holy Spirit, or even wanting to take care of someone less fortunate since God took care of them. Whatever the reason is, there is a good Scriptural backing for taking care of the homeless and hungry

Scripture is clear about the need to help those less fortunate. Instead of just having an abstract faith, it’s important to put it into practice in tangible ways, such as feeding and taking care of those who are hungry and cannot do it themselves: homeless, widows, orphans, etc. Anybody in need deserves our compassion, if for no other reason than the Lord being compassionate to us. If you have any other verses or quotes to share, please do so in a comment below. Also, feel free to share any stories of outreaches you or your church may have done to feed the hungry.
It is therefore incumbent on all of us to look out and take care of those less fortunate and in need. I once again extend a humble plea that wherever we can assist to do so. Government alone cannot bring the relief needed and I believe that working together we can make this coming winter season a little more bearable for our fellow man.
Following his media briefing we will be feeding the street children at Four o Clock this afternoon to officially launch the programme. You are most welcome to join us and become part of this experience.

Thank you.

Mail Us

Department of Social Development
Latlhi Mabilo Complex
257 Barkley Rd

Contact Details

Contact telephone numbers
053 874 9100
Email address: