In this article, we hope to provide an overview of what the Department of social development is and what it is that they do. We will also provide you with a step-by-step guide to registering your non-profit organisation and a guide for job-seekers to apply for vacancies.
What is the Department of Social Development?
Previously called the Department of Welfare but later renamed in July 2000, the new Department of Social Development (DSD) is an arm of the South African government that provides social development, protection, and welfare services to the population of southern Africa. As of 2019/20, about 18 million people had benefited from the Department’s activities, including elderly people, war veterans, people with disabilities, and children, who were opportune to receive monthly social grants.
What Does the Department of Social Development Do?
The Department focuses on creating a better life for the poor, vulnerable, and excluded people in society. It is also charged with reducing poverty, encouraging the social integration of vulnerable groups, and creating conditions for more sustainable livelihoods for all.
Another thing that the Department does is it provides social protection services and helps build strong partnerships with the government and key stakeholders through which these vulnerable individuals and communities can become more competent and effective participants in the improvement of their communities.
The Department of social development also acts as the custodian of international human rights treaties signed and agreed upon by the country, which focuses on protecting the rights of children, people living with disabilities, and senior citizens. This includes coordinating the implementation of these treaties and compiling periodic country reports.
As one of the departments spearheading the fight for alleviating poverty and providing assistance to vulnerable individuals and communities, the Department of social development implements and supports programs that are focused on food relief, capacity building, and responding to social distress. Individuals whose monthly income and assets fall below the specified limits set by the Department have continually benefitted from the assistance provided by the DSD. It does so by giving out social grants given to this vulnerable set.
But to design, a system where the vulnerable set in society depends solely on the social assistance that comes from the state through the Department of social development is not good enough to solve the problems of poverty and food relief. There is a need to establish systems that provide vulnerable people with ways to make money. That is for the government to develop and implement programs that support the poor and vulnerable and encourage them to establish various income‐generating structures, especially for the youth and for women.
For that reason, the Department of social development is involved in programs that encourage capacity building by providing training opportunities, providing operational and financial assistance to non-profit organisations, and creating work opportunities by extending the public works social sector program. It also provides opportunities for job-seekers to participate in learnerships and internships.
As mentioned above, the DSD provides support to non-profit organisations that are registered with the Department. Therefore, to benefit from their support, your organisation must be registered on their database.
How to register as a non-profit organisation with the Department of social development
If you are interested in registering your non-profit organisation, you can apply for registration with the Department of social development. In subsequent paragraphs, we will provide you with how to apply, the documents you will need to attach to your application, and where to submit your application.
If your organisation is a trust, company, or any other association that is established for a public purpose and is not out to make profits, then it is a non-profit organisation. Their service is to the community and the society around them.
By registering your NPO, you are open to many benefits that having the certificate brings:
- It improves your credibility and funding opportunities
- Registering your NPO allows your organisation to open a bank account
- It also helps your organisation have access to tax incentives.
To register with the Department of social development, you must be one of the following:
- A non-governmental organisation (NGO)
- A community-based organisation (CBO)
- Or a faith-based organisation (FBO).
If you meet the criteria for registration, here’s what you should do:
Submit the completed NPO application form at the nearest provincial social development office alongside two copies of your organisation’s founding documentation. The necessary documentation includes:
- Deeds of trust and letter of authorisation from the courts
- Certificate of incorporation and memorandum and articles of association
- Voluntary Association – Constitution
If you do not attach these documents, your application will be discarded.
To submit your application, go to your nearest provincial Social Development office. You can as well as post it to The Directorate, Non-profit organisations, Department of Social Development, Private Bag X901, Pretoria, 0001 or better still deliver it by hand to the Department of Social Development, 134 Pretorius Street, HSRC Building, Pretoria.
Suppose you are not satisfied with the rejection of your organisation’s registration application. In that case, you are allowed to file an appeal to the panel arbitrators so that your registration may be reconsidered.
After registering your NPO you are required to submit the annual reports of your organisation nine months after the end of its financial year. These annual reports must include a narrative report as well as a financial report.
You should note that:
- It is a criminal offence for an organisation to operate under the pretence of a registered NPO to benefit from various funding opportunities.
- the entire non-profit organisation registration process may take up to two months to be completed
- The Department will send you a letter acknowledging that your application has been received.
- If your application meets the requirements of the Nonprofit Organisations Act, 1997, you will be issued a registration certificate.
Department of social development vacancies:
Right now, there are no details of available vacancies at the Department of social development, but you can check their website for regular updates on job vacancies as well as internships that the Department has to offer. If you find a vacant position that you would like to apply for, here is a guide on how to go about the application process as well as all necessary documentation.
The Department of social development provides job opportunities as well as internships every year. You can find an updated list of available job vacancies on the official Department of social development website. To apply for the Department of Social Development Jobs, you have to follow the following steps.
- First of all, you have to create your account on the official website of the Department of Social Development.
- After you have done this, you will have to log in to your account.
- Once you log in to your account, you will be required to select a job profile for yourself; remember to check the requirements for that job and ensure that you are eligible for that job profile.
- After you must have selected the profile, you will have to fill the application form.
- Fill the application form carefully and correctly.
- After filling the form, click on the submit button and wait for the process to be completed.
- Candidates are advised to print out the application form with them so that they can be used when needed.
For more information, questions or queries, you have reached the Department of social development through these contact details:
Postal Private Bag X901, Pretoria, 0001
Physical 134 Pretorius Street, HSRC Building, Pretoria
Tel 012 312 7500
Fax 012 312 7470