Finding solutions to complex social problems in South Africa
By Barry Smith | March 2007 | View Full Text
Despite political stability and strong economic growth, South Africa is faced with widespread poverty and growing inequality. Anti-poverty work in South Africa is too often characterized by a lack of trust, common purpose and collaborative leadership between the various sectors and stakeholders in development.
What is needed are more inclusive partnerships -- including partnerships around social giving and a practice of "social justice philanthropy." Social justice philanthropy doesn't just mobilize financial, material and voluntary resources more strategically; it also promotes empowerment of communities through access to knowledge, ideas, and decision-making. In contrast, traditional philanthropy tends to stress the mere act of giving without challenging the social and economic systems that perpetuate poverty and inequality.
This article was prepared for the 2006 annual report of the Social Change Assistance Trust (SCAT -- www.scat.org.za). Barry Smith is Regional Director, Southern Africa, of The Synergos Institute.
Partnership & Collaboration | Partnerships -- Overview | Philanthropic Actors & Issues | Social Justice & Community Development | Africa (Sub-Saharan) | South Africa