Despite 25 years into democracy and billions of rands in
development, living circumstances and economic conditions for
very few households have changed. One in every three South
Africans is living in extreme poverty and poor shelter…




The teaching of activism has shrunk remarkably in South Africa.


Cape Town land markets have become increasingly over the last five years.


Limited development finance is a global constraint in addressing poverty and inequality.


Delivery of a wide range of affordable housing solutions is critical in addressing the housing and land crisis.


DAGs core work and strategies are established through its deep rooted experience with grassroots leaders, organisations and movements.


Written by Querida Saal & Helen Rourke In November 2020, the national Department of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation announced with great fanfare that the government will no longer prioritise building houses for qualifying applicants, but instead focus its interventions on providing serviced land which people can use to build their homes themselves. The reprioritisation is ostensibly a response to the call for land made by the landless as well as enterprising individuals unwilling to
“People need permanency to fix their lives…housing and social development only work when we work together. You can’t do one without the other!” Given the recent announcements and focus on the homelessness, DAG sees transitional housing facilities linked to social development processes as a potential long term solution (read DAG statement).  On Tuesday, 08 June, DAG hosted an exciting Transitional Housing Learning Tour. The learning tour saw around 15 participants from various community organisations and
DAG HAS UNPACKED THE CONTENT OF THE WESTERN CAPE GOVERNMENT DRAFT INCLUSIONARYHOUSING POLICY FRAMEWORK FOR YOU! The Western Cape draft inclusionary housing policy framework was released for public comment on 14 May 2021 and it lays out important definitions and concepts. It also outlines how municipalities should go about developing municipal inclusionary housing policies. Check out the story board below, which our team has put together in order to unpack and simplify the content of
A move in the right direction! The Provincial Government has released a Draft Inclusionary Housing Policy Framework for public commenting.  If you would like to #HaveYourSay and be a part of the public participation process, click on the links below to read the draft policy, register for Monday’s meeting and to find directions on how to submit your comments. Read the policy and submit comments… To attend one of the virtual workshops hosted by
Click to read the Press Statement… Click the image below to read the publication…
Statement Issued by: Development Action Group Minister Sisulu’s delivery of the budget speech shed some interesting light into the direction of the housing programme. It is important for citizens to understand the implications of the approach outlined by the Minister. For the last 35 years, DAG has worked along with community based and civic organisations in advocating for the realisation of housing and land rights. The Minister shared three refocus areas: Upgrading of Informal settlements
MEDIA STATEMENT Date: 26 February 2021 Issued By: Development Action Group OCCUPATIONS VERSUS CITY OF CAPE TOWN The City of Cape Town lodged papers today with High Court in order to collect data on the households living in Cissie Gool House. The aim of the data, from what once can tell, is to estimate the eligibility and means testing of the households living in the occupation. Whilst this might be the outward narrative, the ultimate
Today a group of civil society organisations and academics urged President Cyril Ramaphosa to immediately release three large, well-located and vacant (or under-used) military sites in Cape Town for the development of low-income housing. The three pieces of nationally-owned land – Ysterplaat, Wingfield and Youngsfield – have the potential to combat Cape Town’s affordable housing crisis and alleviate the most harmful effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has driven many into homelessness. By releasing the
On the 1st of September, the City of Cape Town’s Mayoral Committee Member for Spatial Planning and Environment announced new measures to enable property owners in less  formal township establishment across Cape Town to develop small scale rental accommodation. This life-altering news marked a significant shift in housing delivery and in highlighting the role that the government can play in enabling the delivery of alternative tenure and housing models in Cape Town. The announcement includes the
Mattie Stepanek once said that “Unity is strength. . . when there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved.“– this is very true and very encouraging to see how building relationships and partnerships between civil society organisations and the private sector can improve the quality of life and food security in the communities. DAG is moved to be part of  a life-altering electronic food voucher initiative which has provided about 1900 food relief
•By Adi Kumar• Cape Town has its hands full with land occupations. Fiery commentary from the national Minister of Human Settlements, Mayco Member for Human Settlements and Mayor emphasises the need to protect public and private land. All state that lawlessness is not to be tolerated. The spheres of government have also systematically blamed each other for the failures. The national minister claims that the City of Cape Town is unable to protect land or the
We are delighted to announce that finally, after two years of patiently waiting, DAG is now a full member and partner of the Global Land Tool Network (GLTN). The Global Land Tool Network (GLTN) is a dynamic and multi-sectoral alliance of international partners committed to increasing access to land and tenure security for all, with a particular focus on the poor, women and youth. As an organisation that values partnerships, DAG is thrilled to have the
Background In 2019, DAG partnered with the Provincial Department of Human Settlements to work in eleven informal settlements in the Western Cape to strengthen the capacity of local civic organisations and leaders to actively participate and lead their informal settlement upgrading projects. As a result of this partnership, DAG was selected as one of the Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) working in partnership with the Mossel Bay Municipality (MBM), informal settlement leaders and Aurecon to implement the
•By Adi Kumar & Querida Saal  Et al• Wingfield, Youngsfield and Ysterplaat could house more than 120,000 people In his address to the nation on 20 April, President Cyril Ramaphosa said: “There can be no greater injustice than a society where some live in comfort and plenty, while others struggle at the margins to survive with little or nothing at all.” Nowhere is this injustice clearer than in access to land and housing. So why
•By Aditya Kumar & Phumeza Mlungwana• About a week ago a municipal official contacted one of the partners of the Asivikelane network trying to find out why his municipality had still not been given the green light in our bi-weekly findings, even after they had delivered water tanks to informal settlements. When this query was followed up with community leaders, it was discovered that in one settlement, tanks had been delivered but not yet filled
Hunger combined with the COVID-19 pandemic poses a greater threat to the poor communities than the pandemic on its own. With little economic opportunities during the lockdown and insignificant informal trade, most of the informal settlements communities especially are struggling to put food on the table. The demand for and access to food has become a major point of concern and a huge priority. DAG continues to work closely with various partners and organisations involved
The construction sector is pleading to be allowed to return to work as from the 1st of May under strict measures to mitigate the spread of the virus. The Construction COVID-19 Rapid Response Task Team (CC19RRTT) is the champion behind this initiative which consists of associations in the construction sector and its entire value chain that ranges from suppliers, manufacturers, built environment professionals, developers and contractors. The CC19RRTT argues among other points, that the sector currently
De-densification is complex and contested at the best of times and needs to be assessed and navigated on a case-by-case basis; it is definitely not an appropriate response during the Covid-19 disaster that creates further shocks to a part of society that is most vulnerable, nor is it appropriate at scale. South Africa has close to 2,700 informal settlements that are home to more than 1.2 million vulnerable households. Despite several progressive policies and frameworks,
10 April 2020 The Development Action Group (DAG) is deeply concerned about conditions and operations at the Strandfontein Sports Grounds, in Mitchell’s Plain currently housing more than a thousand homeless people. Commencing in early April, the City of Cape Town has been busing homeless persons from across the city to the campsite, where they are to be housed for the duration of the 21-day lockdown period announced by the President to curb the spread of


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