|Position / Job Description :||Development Officer|
|Name :||Ms M. Van der Berg
|Contact number :||023 626 8201
082 884 5304
Duties & Responsibilities
Promote integrated rural development and social upliftment with the purpose of improving the quality of life and the standard of living of farm workers
Promote the social, health, civic, physical, and economic development of rural communities
|Position / Job Description :||Development Officer|
|Name :||Ms A. Wantza|
|Contact number :||023 626 8200|
Duties & Responsibilities
Responsible for Social Development and related functions within the urban communities
Promote the social, health, civic, physical, and economic development of urban communities needs
The Langeberg Municipality encompasses an area of 4 518.5km² where ⅓ of the population resides in the rural area (resident on farms). These residents are mainly farm workers who are sparsely scattered throughout the rural area and have difficulty accessing services, such as libraries, clinics, sports facilities and other government services. To address these and other needs a partnership was established between the farm workers, farmers, wine cellars and the Langeberg Municipality. This partnership resulted in the establishment of the Rural Development Association, a Section 21 Company and a registered Non-Profit Organisation (NPO). All 4 partners are represented on the Board of Directors and serve for a period of two years. The Directors of the Rural Development Association meet bimonthly to discuss, implement and evaluate programmes and projects.
Vision and Objectives of Department
- The objectives of the Rural Development Association are:
- To establish partnerships between the commercial farmer, farm worker, wine cellars and the Langeberg Municipality.
- To establish a functional network of present and future service providers for the rural communities.
- To promote integrated rural development and social upliftment with the purpose of improving the quality of life and the standard of living of all farm workers.
- To promote the social, health, civic, physical, economical and intellectual development of rural communities.
- To empower farm communities, through skill development initiatives, to take ownership of their own development.
- To promote rural development in general in the Langeberg Municipal area of jurisdiction.
Projects - Current & Completed
- Early Childhood Development –thirty – one (31) crèches have been established in the rural areas. The crèches play an important role on the farms as they allow the mothers to continue working while their children are being safely cared for. All crèches are visited regularly and the staff of these crèches is advised on programmes, menus, activities and other such matters. Staff training takes place on a regular basis and support in the form of educational toys, mattresses, stationery etc, is also provided. Partners in Early Childhood Development include; Grassroots Educare Trust, Kaapse Vroue Forum, National Association of Child and Youth Care Workers, Graham and Rhona Beck Skills Centre and the Department: Social Development.
- Substance Abuse Programmes – alcohol and drug abuse awareness programmes are presented, to address the addiction of these substances. Programmes are presented in the form of puppet shows for the primary school children and more formal discussions with adults. Partners in the substance abuse programmes are; Department: Agriculture, Toevlug Rehabilitation Centre, SAPD, WOW Ministries and Hearts of Men Programme.
- Vegetable Gardens – Thirty-two (32) large vegetable gardens have been established on farms to provide nutritional food for families and to generate additional income by selling excess produce. Assistance to these farms is by way of seed, compost, insecticides, etc. Gardens are evaluated and adjudicated during the growing season and prizes are awarded in different categories. Partners involved include; Department: Agriculture, Robertson Wine Valley, Terason and Kaap-Agri
- Farm Committees- twenty (20) farm committees have been established throughout the rural area and the purpose of these committees is to capacitate farm workers to manage their own affairs. These committees meet once a month and are assisted in the initial phases by the rural development officer. The committee members undergo training which includes, project management, financial management, committee functioning and civic training. Partners in establishing and maintaining these committees are: Department: Agriculture and the Graham and Rhona Beck Skills Centre.
- Rural Libraries – five (5) rural libraries have been established with the assistance from Biblionef and the Provincial Library Service. Under normal circumstances the farm workers have to travel to the nearest town to access books from the formal library. These rural libraries afford the farm worker the access to a library in close proximity to their home. It is vitally important that a reading habit be nurtured from a young age.
- Farm Worker of the Year Competition – this initiative is the annual highlight of all farm workers in the Langeberg Municipal area. Nomination, submitted by employers, are received for 9 different categories, for example: tractor driver, irrigation specialist, junior, middle and senior management. The winner, runner up and third place in each category are made known during a regional function and all the winners then advance to the Provincial competition which culminates in a grand function at the Grand West Casino complex. During 2010 the Langeberg area was privileged to win the tractor driver and the specialist worker category. This competition is funded by the Department: Agriculture.
- Steelband – the equipment for the Steelband was purchased and the members consist of a group of youth from the rural area. They are trained by Mr. John Hargreaves on Saturday mornings and perform at events, weddings and other such events. The band is also in the process of making their first CD which should be available later in the year. The main purpose of this initiative is to keep the youth active with constructive programmes so as to prevent them from experimenting with alcohol and drugs.
- Sports Development – continual discussions with the Department: Cultural Affairs and Sport take place regarding the upgrade and develop of sporting facilities in the rural areas. Sport activities are very popular and every effort is made to assist so as to keep the youth active and free of substance abuse. The National Lotteries Board approved an amount of R206 000.00 for the purchase of sports equipment which has been distributed to sport clubs in the rural areas. The sports equipment was specifically for rugby, soccer, netball and cricket. Farm workers also participate in the Provincial competitions are fare very well. Other initiatives, for example, fishing competitions are also arranged.
- Basic Adult Education – 25% of the rural community is illiterate and the need to provide basic adult education in the rural areas is of utmost importance. A number of initiatives, supported by the Department: Education, is underway and basic stationery is provided to the learners. Other service providers include; Stigting vir die Bemagtiging deur Afrikaans and Media Works.
- HIV/Aids Programmes – a number of HIV/Aids programmes have been rolled out in the rural areas together with voluntary testing initiatives. Programmes were sponsored by the Deciduous Fruit Producers Trust and Hospice.
- Information Sessions – a number of information sessions by Government Departments were arranged so as to inform the rural communities appropriately, for example; Department: Rural Development and Land Reform – tenure security, Department: Labour – labour matters, Department: Home Affairs – ID Book campaign.
- Malpractices on Farms – unfortunately malpractices on farms do occur and they need to be addressed. Labour related matters are referred to the Department: Labour while health issues (water quality, sanitation, housing) are referred to the Cape Winelands District Municipality.