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NPO in Magalies in desperate need of help

Despite promises, the QRRC has not received SLA renewals or funding from the DSD.

The Quegal Restoration and Refuge Centre (QRRC) is one of many local NPOs affected by the Department of Social Development (DSD) not renewing Service Level Agreements (SLA).

According to the CEO of the shelter, Quentin Koeberg, in September 2023, they applied for the renewal at the DSD regarding their SLA that ended in March.

“In March, we passed a forensic and site verification audit, as requested by the DSD. Despite a commitment by Gauteng Premier Panyaza Lesufi to have all SLAs sorted and paid by May 24, we have not received any communication regarding our application to date,” Koeberg stated.

He added last month, the Gauteng Care Crisis Committee took DSD to Court, and it was ruled that DSD has to finalise the SLAs by the end of May, and payment is to be done within seven days of SLAs being concluded.

Quentin Koeberg, CEO of QRRC.

Koeberg said that in the first week of June, QRRC sent an attorney’s letter to the DSD’s Head, Deputy Director General, Partnerships Regional Office and the MEC and has not received a response in regards to the status of their application.

“QRRC has covered DSD-related costs as of April 1, which has now led to finances being depleted, and we had to retrench 22 staff members. Most of these have chosen to continue working with no pay until SLA issues are sorted. The problem is we cannot pay our electricity bills which means there will be inevitable power cuts. This will be disastrous, as we need power to pump borehole water for our beneficiaries. We also owe money to people who assisted in covering other overheads that we cannot pay,” Koeberg said.

If any member of the public wants to support the QRRC with any form of help, contact Koeberg on 083 678 4100.

“Despite no SLAs or payment, the DSD continues to send people for us to take in,” Koeberg concluded.

Last month, Lesufi reaffirmed the government’s unwavering dedication to collaborating with NPOs following a pivotal meeting with sector leaders and the broader NPO sector respectively. Engaging with various organisations, the premier provided updates on the signing of SLAs and issues related to NPO funding.

In his discussions, the premier emphasised the indispensable role of the NPO sector in the care economy, particularly in safeguarding the vulnerable across the province.

Gauteng Government also announced several decisive measures including reverting to a full allocation of R2.4 billion to the sector, an increase from the allocated R1.7 billion and establishing a task team comprising representatives from Gauteng Social Development, Treasury and sector leaders to comprehensively review identified SLA clauses that are deemed challenging in the implementation of various programmes. Each sector within the NPO domain will designate a representative for this task. This task team will report back in 21 days.

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