The Minister of Social Development, Ms. Lindiwe Zulu, acknowledged the pressing need to review policy around the CSG in the year 2020. The following year, the department commissioned the Children’s Institute at the University of Cape Town to undertake a comprehensive review of child poverty and the value of the CSG.
The review will amongst other issues, reflect on the state of child poverty in the country, documenting the policy process in the development and expansion of the CSG, and reviewing the impact of the CSG on child poverty.
The CSG has been successful at reaching a large number of poor children with relative ease and it has the most pro-poor targeting record of all the existing social grants.
The Child Support Grant has successfully reached 13 million children to the value of R510 a month per child. The allocated CSG budget for the 2022/23 financial year was R77 billion.
South Africa’s social assistance program stands as a globally recognised model, acknowledged for its strategic role as the nation’s primary poverty alleviation initiative. In 2022, the World Bank report on inequality in Southern Africa, also identified South Africa’s Child Support Grant as the programme with the largest impact on poverty and the widest coverage of the poor.
Since implementation of social assistance for children, civil society and umbrella organisations have played a key role in advocacy for issues related to the expansion of the grants by age, removal of barriers and systems improvements.
“ The Child Support Grant is currently sitting at an amount of R510 in October 2023, with top-ups (additional amounts) having been provided to all caregivers in 2020 during the national Covid-19 lockdown”
The Foster Child Grant in October 2023 is payable at R1130 per month and the Care Dependency Grant is sitting at R2090. The Child Support Grant Top Up came into effect on 1 June 2022 and as of June 2023, beneficiaries are receiving an amount of R760 per month. These are just two very important facts that were stressed at the launch of the report.
“We urge South Africans to be patient with us and aid in ensuring we achieve child poverty reduction, in securing the future of our country,” said Zulu
Furthermore, we would like to thank all the honourable speakers for the knowledge they imparted and our research team for the information shared. We hope to further achieve more with the CSG (child support grant), and may our efforts in alleviating the effects of child poverty go beyond the reduction goals set for 2030.
In addition to the government’s pro-poor policies of poverty alleviation, the CSG has played a significant role in positive school outcomes and research has shown it has ensured that eligible children receiving the CSG remain in school.