The Jobs Fund awards grants to organisations through a competitive project application process where only the best ideas are funded. Operating on challenge fund principles, the Fund ensures that funding allocations are transparent, open and competitive, and are made by an independent Investment Committee. The Jobs Fund accepts applications from the private, public and non-governmental sector during calls for proposals. Project partners are required to share both risk and costs by matching the grant fund allocation.
The Jobs Fund aims to stimulate good ideas, risk-taking and investment to discover new ways of working, where the costs and risks may be unknown, and where the pro-poor impact, principally in the form of sustainable job creation, may be significantly larger than with conventional approaches. Its goal is also to promote opportunities that lead to the long term improvement of employment prospects of the unemployed, especially for the youth and women of our country.
The Jobs Fund
President Zuma launched the Jobs Fund during the State of the Nation Address on 10 February 2011 and was established by the National Treasury in June 2011 by Minister of Finance and an amount of R9 billion was set aside, towards the realisation of the objectives of the Jobs Fund. The aim of the Jobs Fund is to support innovative approaches and initiatives that create employment in new and innovative ways. The fund provides once-off grants in the areas of enterprise development, infrastructure, support for work seekers and institutional capacity building.
The Jobs Fund utilises a “challenge fund” methodology, which involves the use of matching grants which are allocated following a competitive, transparent and open application process. This competitive application process means that only the best ideas are funded to catalyse innovation and investment in activities that contribute
directly to enhanced employment creation in South Africa. Final funding decisions are made by an independent Investment Committee according to clearly defined criteria.
The Jobs Fund does not intend to tackle the long-term, structural causes of low growth and unemployment on its own. Numerous government initiatives are already tasked with aspects of that challenge, and the Jobs Fund forms part of a suite of such interventions. The Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) was appointed by the National Treasury as the Implementing Agent for the Jobs Fund.
Nor does the Jobs Fund aim to replicate or substitute these initiatives; rather it presents an opportunity to complement them.
Objective of the Jobs Fund
- To co-finance projects by public, private and non-governmental organisations that will significantly contribute to job creation. This involves the use of public money to catalyse innovation and investment on behalf of a range of economic stakeholders in activities that contribute directly to enhanced employment creation in South Africa.
- To address the challenge of unemployment, South Africa requires high rates of sustained economic growth. South Africa’s macro-economic policy environment, infrastructure asset base, schooling system and regulatory frameworks are all key to growth. However, improving and reforming these factors is a long-term process.
- These funding interventions will seek to overcome some of the barriers to job creation that have been identified. Some of these relate to demand for labour, some to the supply of labour and some to the broader institutional environment.
- It has been designed specifically to overcome these barriers by providing public funding through four “funding windows” i.e. Enterprise Development; Infrastructure Investment; Support for Work Seekers and Institutional Capacity Building.
- Within the four identified broad windows, the Jobs Fund seeks to stimulate good ideas, risk-taking and investment to discover new ways of working, where the costs and risks may be unknown, and where the pro-poor impact, principally in the form of sustainable job creation, may be significantly larger than with conventional approaches.
- At its core, the Jobs Fund seeks to operate as a catalyst for innovation and investment in activities which directly contribute to sustainable job creation initiatives, as well as long term employment creation.
Application Process for the Jobs Fund
Some elements applications should include are innovation, a clear indication of how jobs will be created, as well as show that significant results will be met through a Jobs Fund grant.
There will be a two-stage application process. In stage one the applicant submits a concept application. This is assessed against all applications in that funding window or category. If the application is successful, the applicant is invited to submit a full application in the second stage for consideration. Only if the applicant competes successfully in the second stage will a grant be allocated. All funding decisions are made by an independent Investment Committee.
The assessment of applications starts on the day that the call for proposals closes. The fund has set a target of 110 days for the full assessment process, however those applications that are not eligible will be informed by day 15. Those who did not make it past the first stage should know by day 55 and those who are not successful at the second stage will be informed by day 110.
At DTC, our work encompasses mutual trust with each client; international companies as well as small- and medium-sized enterprises. Each client’s activities, products and professional environment are carefully taken into consideration; our goal is to provide tailor-made solutions to the client’s specific business and other corporate needs.
Contact us for further assistance in obtaining the Jobs Fund grant.