October is social development month

2010-09-29 11:36

The social development department has declared October social development month.

“We are marking this month in order to highlight the services that the department offers and the extent to which access to these services can be reached by greater numbers of people who... still suffer the indignity of deprivation, poverty and the curse of underdevelopment,” Minister Edna Molewa said in a statement today.

The programme would raise awareness of what the department could offer people to help accelerate building “socially cohesive and empowered” communities.

Development continued to bypass many people and so more focus and effort was needed to eliminate poverty.

So far the department had managed to reduce the number of people living on less that $1 a day (about R7), one of its Millennium Development Goals targets.

The government needed help from businesses, civil society and communities.

Activities taking place during social development month include the International Victim Empowerment Conference, which would bring together 500 delegates comprising ministers and government representatives, policy makers, academics, activists and NGOs from the Southern Africa Development Community.

The development department would visit old age homes, luncheon clubs and other facilities that catered for the elderly during the month.

This was so that the department could “popularise” the Older Persons Act and ensure compliance.

“...We are working together with the South African Older Persons Forum to improve services to older persons and we are also working hard to ensure that incidents such as the recent tragic deaths of older persons at Peter Wessels Old Age Home do not happen again.”

The Central Drug Authority was launching its national campaign in the Northern Cape next month.

This would be followed by similar provincial activities and would culminate in the 2nd Biennial Substance Abuse Summit.

Molewa said substance abuse was a social problem that affected everyone and so there needed to be a shared responsibility.

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