10 sewing machines for Joe Gqabi District’s IBSP beneficiaries

The DEDEAT Joe Gqabi Regional office distributed 10 sewing machines and materials to 10 Informal Business Support Programme (IBSP) beneficiaries from the Walter Sisulu Local Municipality (WSLM).

The distribution took place at DEDEAT’s regional offices in Aliwal North on 2 March 2023. 

The Eastern Cape Development Corporation implemented the IBSP initiative to support informal businesses across the Eastern Cape. 

Last month, DEDEAT’s Head of Department, Mickey Mama, and Portfolio Committee Member Vimbayohe officiated the handover of IBSP-funded sewing machines at the Taking the Legislature to the People (TLTTP) event held at the Bensonvale College last month. 

At this event, eight sewing machines  – four industrial and four hand-sewing – were handed over to the Sterkspruit beneficiary.

The handover of the 10 industrial, hand sewing and materials to the WSLM beneficiaries was led by the regional director and Walter Sisulu Local Municipality Mayor, Cllr Vania Davids, accompanied by Cllr Moeti. 

Addressing the beneficiaries, the mayor urged beneficiaries to utilise the machines. 

The mayor acknowledged that most informal businesses still work from home, which is an inconvenience as they cannot market their products. 

She committed to raising the issue with the municipality’s management on how best to assist them in working with other role players. 

Appreciating the work and commitment of the Department to assist communities and the Municipality, she committed to visiting the beneficiaries as she knows where they work and stay as part of her oversight.

Delivering his message, the regional director thanked the mayor and her team for attending the event and the local municipality’s commitment to its mandatory role, particularly its oversight role. 

He encouraged the beneficiaries to graduate from informal to formal businesses to access government support. 

He explained that the main reason why they were unable to benefit from the government’s COVID-19 stimulus packages was that they were not business compliant. The Department is assisting them in registering with the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission and South African Revenue Services through the self-help portal.

In closing, the regional director urged the young people who benefitted from the programme (two men and two women) to approach the National Youth Development Agency, whom he met earlier, for funding support to grow their businesses. 

He encouraged all beneficiaries to be job creators as the unemployment rate, especially among youth, keeps rising.

He also said that they should apply for the support offered by the Department of Small Business Development, the Small Enterprise Development Agency, the Department, and others that could assist in growing their businesses.

For more about the Department’s funding highlights, go to http://bit.ly/3HaPQXA