Towards a strategy for poverty alleviation in Mashau
Mashau, Thinandavha Derrick
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The main aim of this study is to investigate the poverty situation and outline a strategy for poverty alleviation in the rural area of Mashau. Mashau is one of the villages in the Limpopo province of South Africa and it forms part of the 70% of the country's most poor people who are in the rural areas. Chapter 1 of this study presupposed by way of a central theoretical argument that community based job creation projects that ensure the participation of all stakeholders, community members, government, traditional leaders, non-government and faith-based organizations and business people, can be a useful poverty alleviation strategy in general and also in Mashau. This should be implemented in line with the human centred approach. Each of the four objectives (1.3) comes under scrutiny in Chapters 2-5 respectively. The quest to investigate and assess the poverty situation at Mashau and to come up with a relevant strategy required a broader understanding of the economic and demographic context of the entire Republic of South Africa. That is why Chapter 2 of this study mainly focused on identifying the core variables that are used to measure levels of poverty in South Africa, whilst Chapter 3 focused on current strategic initiatives for poverty alleviation on the part of the government. Chapter 4 paid attention to the scale, manifestations and causes of poverty in Mashau. It became clear that the majority of people in Mashau are unemployed, lack the basics of life and are unable to access services. They depend mainly on government social grants and natural resources (small-scale farming) for subsistence. Although South African policies and frameworks for poverty alleviation are among the best in the world, they have failed the country's people regarding implementation. Mashau village is one of many examples of this neglect. The government has succeeded in building a small number of RDP houses and providing other services at a very low pace. But further than that, the Mashau people cannot experience and enjoy the beauty of South African economic policies and strategies for poverty alleviation. Chapter 5 suggests a relevant strategy for poverty alleviation at Mashau. The strategy proposed affirms the central theoretical argument outlined in Chapter 1. It may be concluded that the suggested strategy can only succeed if the implementation plan or program is put in place together with monitoring and evaluating systems.
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