Current Grants: Voice, Rights and Agency
The RAITH Foundation currently funds the following organisations:
Association For Rural Advancement (AFRA)
AFRA is a land rights advocacy NGO working to support marginalised rural people, with a focus on farm dwellers and labour tenants in the uMgungundlovu District in KwaZulu Natal. The issue to be addressed in this project is the on-going marginalisation of farm dwellers, who are largely unable to realise their Constitutional rights to land, services, housing and dignity, due to highly unequal power relations on farms, and the ineffective implementation of legislation and policies designed to give effect to these rights. RAITH funding is in support of the objectives of this project for AFRA to contribute to realisation of the rights of farm dwellers to land, services, housing and dignity.
Global Environmental Trust (GET)
GET is currently opposing existing and proposed coal mining operations (and ancillary developments) in the vicinity of Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park (HiP) that have caused (since 2004) and continue to cause, environmental degradation and destruction, ongoing human rights violations and the ruination of the fabric of rural communities. RAITH funding is in support of the objectives of this project to oppose coal mining (and ancillary developments) impacting on human rights, the environment and the HiP.
Women’s Legal Centre
The Women’s Legal Centre (the Centre) is an African feminist legal Centre that advances women’s rights and equality. The Centre was established in 1999 by a group of committed women lawyers to realize the promise of South Africa’s Constitution. Exercising their constitutional rights is a major obstacle for women. The Centre will provide, free of charge, strategic legal services to vulnerable and marginalized women within the following key areas: a) Violence against Women; b) Women’s’ Rights in Personal Relationships; c) Women’s Rights to Land and Tenure Security; d) Women’s Rights in their Places of Work (Vulnerable Women Workers); and e) Women’s Rights to Sexual Health and Reproductive Rights. RAITH funding is in support of the objectives of this project to advance women’s rights within the specified focus areas over a three year period. Thereby ensuring that rights on paper are extended into the lived realities of women, whilst acknowledging that women in various spheres of their lives do not live single issue lives and that oppression and prejudice is often intersectional.
Gun Free South Africa
Gun Free South Africa is a national NGO committed to reducing gun violence in South Africa through strengthening national gun laws, creating safe public spaces through the Gun Free Zone (GFZ) initiative, and working with those most affected by gun violence, to demonstrate alternatives to the prevailing social norms that contribute to gun violence. RAITH funding is in support of the objectives of this project to reduce gun violence by and against young men and women. This will require a shift in societal attitudes to guns from desirable to acknowledging risk.
Tshwaranang Legal Advocacy Centre (TLAC)
TLAC is a registered non-governmental organisation (NGO) that was established in 1996 to promote
and defend the rights of women to be free from violence and to have access to quality effective
services. TLAC seeks to address the persistent gender bias in traditional courts which limits justice
outcomes for women who experience Gender Based violence (GBV). The objective is to advocate for
the transformation of the traditional justice systems to better respond and uphold the rights of women
who experience gender based violence. RAITH funding is in support of the overarching objective of
this project to advocate for the transformation of traditional courts to better respond and uphold the
rights of women when dealing with gender based violence matters.
Social Change Assistance Trust (SCAT)
Scat is a veteran human rights and social justice philanthropy organisation established in 1984 with 32 years of experience contributing to positive, community-centred, community-driven change across four Provinces. The issue Scat seeks to address is the need for active citizenry which is organized and responsive to injustice in communities. We aim to shift imbalances related to power, access, opportunity and other factors which permeate the communities where we work. Scat’s objective is to partner with local development agencies (LDAs) in order to support and empower community-driven responses to inequality and injustice. RAITH funding is in support of the overarching objective of this project to partner with local development agencies (LDAs) in order to support and empower community-driven responses to inequality and injustice.
Social Justice Coalition (SJC)
The SJC is a democratic, mass-based social movement founded in 2008 that campaigns for the advancement of the constitutional rights to life, dignity, equality, freedom and safety for all people, but especially those living in informal settlements across South Africa. The project is aimed at organising informal settlement residents in order to support the building and articulation of substantive demands for long-term infrastructure and equitable state resources in informal settlements. RAITH funding is in support of SJC’s objective to organise poor and working class people to successfully articulate substantive demands for long-term infrastructure and equitable state resources for poor areas, especially informal settlements.
The Solstice Foundation
The applicant is a voluntary association using the Solstice Foundation (a registered Public Benefit Organization) as a fiscal sponsor. This application seeks to hold public regulators accountable for their failure to discharge their responsibilities to protect the environment. The applicant is an initiative that seeks to address regulatory failure by the Department of Mineral Resources, the Department of Water and Sanitation, the Saldana Bay Municipality and SANPARKS, all of which have failed to protect a critical biodiversity area by permitting mining to take place in a sensitive buffer zone around the West Coast National Park. The mining will cause severe environmental damage to be done to an area that has been the subject of decades-long, ongoing struggles to protect ecological integrity RAITH funding is in support of the overarching objective of this project to ensure that mining activities at Elandsfontein are averted, thus protecting the surrounding ecosystems, the Elandsfontein Aquifer and ultimately the Langebaan Lagoon.
Legal Resources Centre (LRC)
The LRC is South Africa’s largest pub¬lic inter¬est, human rights law clinic established in 1979. The LRC provides free, quality legal services to use the law in the interests of vul¬ner¬a¬ble, poor and mar¬gin¬alised people. RAITH funding is in support of the LRC’s objective to advance social justice and contribute to an improved capacity of clients to articulate their needs and challenges, and of the LRC’s ability to respond to those needs and challenges.
Centre for Child Law
The University of Pretoria Centre for Child Law (CCL) was established in 1998 and is a registered law clinic that works to promote the interests of children in South Africa. The Centre aims to establish and promote child law and uphold the rights of children in South Africa particularly where there are rights violations. RAITH funding is in support of the objective of this project to strengthen the governing child rights framework in South Africa to ensure that children’s rights are realized.
Hlanganisa Institute for Development in South Africa (HIDSA)
HIDSA was established in 2006 and is an innovative, developmental donor organization. HIDSA seeks to address the issue of limited funding to Community Based Organisations in marginalized communities. In addition Hivos aims to support CBOs doing work that elevates the voices of marginalised people so that they can be heard and listened to; interventions that increase people’s participation in democratic processes and through these actions deepen democracy. RAITH funding is in support of the objective to provide direct small grants to community based organisations that enable the CBOs to contribute to social change, social justice and gender equity.
ProBono.Org is a public interest legal clearinghouse that provides free legal services to marginalised people in South Africa through the pro bono services of the private legal profession. The issues to be addressed by this programme are the extreme shortage of legal services for impoverished people living in South Africa and for civil society organisations, and the failure of law, the administration of law and of policy to address the legal difficulties people face. RAITH funding is in support of the objective of this programme to offer a free legal service to marginalised people through pro bono legal practitioners, and to identify areas of legislation, policy and the administration of law that require change and intervention.
SECTION27 is a public interest law centre established in 2010 and uses law, advocacy, legal literacy, research and community mobilisation to achieve access to healthcare services, sufficient food and basic education for everyone. The constitutional advocacy, education and mobilization programme aims to increase access to the Constitution and to promote constitutional literacy amongst poor and vulnerable communities. RAITH funding is in support of the objective of this project for advocacy and education regarding key socioeconomic rights and the overall place of the Constitution in service delivery.
Treatment Action Campaign (TAC)
The TAC was established in 1998 and advocates for quality healthcare for all who live and work in South Africa. The main issue that TAC seeks to address is the issue of lack of sufficient access to quality health-care because of a failure of governance at all levels, including the South African government’s failing to address the HIV/TB epidemic in South Africa. RAITH funding is in support of the objective of this project to build a sophisticated and well-informed movement of users of the public healthcare system that can advocate effectively and strategically both at local and at national level for access to quality healthcare.
Rural Democracy Trust– under Voice, Rights and Agency
The Rural Democracy Trust is the Alliance for Rural Democracy (ARD) and is a dynamic grouping of civil society organizations and communities which come together to contest policy and legislation that threatens to dilute the rights of citizens living rural in the former homeland areas. RAITH funding is in support of the objective of this project to defend, affirm and promote the fundamental human rights of persons/ groups who are members of rural communities within the Republic, having particular concern for the land rights and social justice issues and challenges which face rural communities, who frequently do not have access to or the benefit of their full constitutional rights.
Ndifuna Ukwazi (“NU”) is an activist organisation and law centre based in Cape Town and was established in 2011. Ndifuna Ukwazi has a broad vision to create an integrated city, through the expansion and protection of affordable housing in well-located areas in the inner city. Ndifuna Ukwazi uses highly visible campaigns and advocacy focusing on strategic parcels of surplus state land and struggles in the city bowl and inner city suburbs of Sea Point, Woodstock and Salt River. RAITH funding is in support of the objective of this project to expand and protect access to affordable well located housing in the Cape Town inner city.
The Right2Know Campaign was launched in August 2010 as a democratic campaign which contributes to ensuring that everyone enjoys the access to information and freedom of expression necessary to meet their social, economic, political and ecological needs and live free from want, in equality and in dignity. R2K works on issues around the growing securitisation of the state, supporting other civil society organisations to access public and private sector information, threats to media freedom as well as enabling public and community media for greater diversity, and increasing access and reducing the cost of telecommunications. RAITH funding is in support of the overall objective of the project to build a democratic campaign that strengthens and unites civil society to ensure secrecy legislation and the conduct of security agencies is aligned to the underlying values of the South African Constitution; ensure that public and private sector information is easily accessible to citizens and ensure people enjoy a free and diverse range of public, private and non-profit media and open and affordable access to the internet and to bring down the cost of telecommunications.
Afesis-corplan is a progressive, non-governmental organisation that has contributed to community-driven development and good local governance in the Eastern Cape since 1992. The organisation’s strategic goal is to support citizens to actively unlock and enhance the state’s potential to deliver responsive services and targeted development initiatives. To achieve this, Afesis-corplan uses participatory methods, most of which have been developed and tested over time, to empower citizens to take their rightful places in local governance. RAITH funding is in support of the objectives of this project to support and facilitate the involvement of civil society in the review of legislative mechanisms for citizen participation in local governance; to contribute towards systemic change in the manner in which local government facilitates, supports and resource citizen participation on the one hand; and the manner in which citizens take up opportunities to participate on the other; and to pilot innovative and alternative spaces for co-creation between citizens and local government.
Socio-Economic Rights Institute of South Africa (SERI)
SERI promotes the fulfilment of socio-economic rights and an adequate standard of living for vulnerable groups in South Africa by providing research, advocacy and litigation assistance to poor communities and organisations that represent them. In a society based on constitutionalism, and which has chosen to pursue a project of social transformation through law, it is essential that poor and vulnerable people have ongoing access to specialist advice and representation which will assist them to amplify their voices and pursue their objectives using the tools of legal activism. RAITH funding is in support of the objective of this project to enable communities, social movements and individuals to develop and implement their own agendas for the enforcement of social and economic rights, and to protect the political spaces in which communities, social movements and individuals organise and take action to give effect to those rights.
Equal Education (EE) is a voluntary association based in Khayelitsha which was established in 2008. EE is mainly active in the Western and Eastern Cape and in Gauteng; it also has members and activities in Limpopo and Kwa-Zulu Natal. EE seeks to improve quality and equity in South African public schools so that young people can realize their right to dignity, equity and a good quality education. The overall aim of this work is to see an improvement in school infrastructure across South Africa, by contributing to improvements in individual schools, but also by promoting improvements in specific policies and practices at provincial and national levels. RAITH funding is in support of the overall objective of this project to ensure that Norms and Standards for School Infrastructure are properly implemented in Gauteng province, through monitoring school improvements, and thus putting pressure on the government to uphold promises to improve infrastructure throughout South Africa.
The Learning Trust (TLT)
The Learning Trust is a capacity building and grantmaking intermediary organisation that supports grassroots structures/CBOs with a focus on youth and education rights. The Learning Trust provides an important support service enabling access to hard-to-reach, urban and peri-urban and rural formations that have a social justice agenda. RAITH funding is in support of the overall objective of this project of capacity development, leadership training and the provision of small grants to seven community based organisations.
Bench Marks Foundation
Bench Marks Foundation is a faith-based organisation originally established by the churches in South Africa in 2002 as a non-profit company. Bench Marks argues that “justice requires that we stand with those oppressed, impoverished and exploited and that we work to change the structures and policies in order to create a fair and sustainable world.” To assist the poor and working class communities to attain justice, the Foundation has adopted research as a tool for justice and redress. The aim of its research is to draw on communities’ knowledge, while providing information and skills that assist poor communities in seeking democratic and non-violent alternatives to the conditions in which they find themselves. RAITH funding is in support of the overall objective of this project to empower communities to be better able to hold corporates to account to ensure the effects of corporate activity on communities are better factored into decision making (in mining affected communities) by corporates and authorities that impact on these communities.
Community Media Trust (CMT)
Community Media Trust (CMT) is a non-profit company established in 2012. GroundUp is a project based at the CMT offices and has been active since 2012. GroundUp's objective is to amplify the voice of poor people by being the main publisher of social justice news in Cape Town, and eventually South Africa. By training and employing reporters who live in marginalised communities it seeks to enable ordinary citizens to realize their rights by ensuring that their voices are heard. GroundUp is dedicated to contributing to a more just and equitable society by holding the private sector and government accountable to the poor with regards to service provision and issues such as housing, healthcare, education, sanitation and the rights of women and immigrants. RAITH funding is in support of the overall objective of this project to amplify the voice of poor people by being the main publisher of social justice news in Cape Town, and eventually South Africa.
Workers’ World Media Productions (WWMP)
WWMP is a non-profit organization that specializes in developing democratic mass media and organizational platforms nationally and in several local communities that focus on socio-economic and political issues that affect them. The project will contribute to the promotion and protection of human and labour rights by strengthening the organising capacity and building media platforms of poor communities and vulnerable workers in South Africa to take up their own interests and enjoy freedom of expression. RAITH funding is in support of the objectives of this project to contribute towards building strong democratic organizations and democratic mass media platforms within 20 local communities and three groups of precarious workers (community health care workers, farmworkers and waste-pickers/ex-mineworkers) in which women play a central role based on principles of unity, independence, democracy and non-discrimination.