During the early stages of the Covid-19 pandemic, governments introduced lockdowns to stop or slow down the spread of the virus, however the financial impact of this weighed heavily on citizens.
In South Africa, several relief measures were introduced to assist citizens. The Social Relief of Distress (SRD) grant was introduced to help unemployed individuals while many workers benefited from the Covid-19 Temporary Employer/Employee Relief Scheme (TERS).
The Solidarity Fund, launched in 2020, saw millions of rands contributed by citizens, businesses, organisations along with R150 million seeded from the state.
The organisation says as at 16 March, it had received just under R3.8 billion in Covid-19 relief funding and disbursed below R3.3 billion.
Dr Nozipho Sangweni COO of the Solidarity Fund revealed that in its final months, the fund will look to wrap up existing projects, record and preserve the legacy of the Fund through documentation and set up the Solidarity Fund up for successful remobilisation should it be required.
Adrian Enthoven, Deputy chairperson of the fund explains that the fund was set up to tackle a crisis and while Covid-19 may be with us for some time in the future, it is in a different phase.
He said, “We were set up for a particular purpose, we feel we have fulfilled that purpose and its now time to wind down the fund”.
“It was really a sense of this is a national effort and everyone is pulling in the same direction and I think we really achieved an amazing amount. I think it's kind of a testimony to how South Africans are able to get things done when they work together” concluded Enthoven.