Author: Marlene Nqumse

12 September 2022 Media Release: GRDM faced with another tragic loss – Adri Miles passes away

GRDM faced with another tragic loss – Adri Miles passes away

For immediate release
12 September 2022

The Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM) family has suffered yet another tragic loss after one of its dear colleagues, Adri Miles, passed away at the age of 37 during the early hours of 7 September 2022.

Adri was a mother of two who started her GRDM career in October 2007 as a temporary employee in the Social Development section. She was later permanently appointed at GRDM Community Services as an Administrative Assistant for Municipal Health Services on 1 June 2010. This was as a result of her excellent work ethic and dedication to her job.

Tributes have already been poured in from friends, colleagues and family. Her love for singing, dedication to her religious beliefs and her winning smile and warm character, are some of the character traits she will be remembered for.  Her colleague and ‘bosom-buddy’ at work for more than ten years, Lee-ann Eksteen remembers Adri as her confidant and sister. “She taught me a lot, especially not to give up easily and to trust in God for everything. ‘His eye is on the sparrow’, was one of the songs we often sang with passion and enthusiasm – ‘uit volle bors’! My heart will always smile when I recall those special memories. I will always feel pain knowing that she is no longer with us, but the thought that she is truly free, gives me comfort”.

“Fly high, my friend, until we meet again!” – Lee-Ann Eksteen.

Melanie Wilson, Adri’s first supervisor at the then Eden District Municipality, recalls working with her as a young, passionate and dedicated twenty-year-old ‘girl’, who began her journey at the Social Development Section of Community Services in 2007.   “She was a beautiful, vibrant and powerful young woman.  Our connection with her, was instant and when I moved over to Tourism and Economic Development, it was a heart-breaking time for both of us.”

Melanie further said: “She was full of life, love and light.  She was not ashamed to display and demonstrate her love for God. Without a doubt a God-fearing woman. My heart is broken by Adri’s passing. The legacy and memories that she leaves behind will live in my heart forever,” Melanie concluded. On a lighter note, Wilson also referred to their fellow colleague Johannes Jaftha and Adri who always opened all their programs by singing the National Anthem in perfect harmony.

As GRDM family, we send our deepest sympathies to our late colleague’s family, husband, and their two children, whom she treasured so much and who have brought her so much love and joy.

Her voice has surely become silent, but her memories will always live on in our hearts.

Let’s take comfort in the words of one of her favorited songs:  His eye is on the Sparrow

Why should I feel discouraged, Why should the shadows come,
Why should my heart be lonely, And long for heaven, heaven and home,
When, when Jesus is my portion, My constant Friend is He;

Oh, oh-oh, his eye is on the sparrow, And I know He watched, watched it over me.

2 September 2022 Media Release: The Garden Route District Municipality launches its electronic job application system

𝗧𝗵𝗲 𝗚𝗮𝗿𝗱𝗲𝗻 𝗥𝗼𝘂𝘁𝗲 𝗗𝗶𝘀𝘁𝗿𝗶𝗰𝘁 𝗠𝘂𝗻𝗶𝗰𝗶𝗽𝗮𝗹𝗶𝘁𝘆 𝗹𝗮𝘂𝗻𝗰𝗵𝗲𝘀 𝗶𝘁𝘀 𝗲𝗹𝗲𝗰𝘁𝗿𝗼𝗻𝗶𝗰 𝗷𝗼𝗯 𝗮𝗽𝗽𝗹𝗶𝗰𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻 𝘀𝘆𝘀𝘁𝗲𝗺

For immediate release
2 September 2022

In another historic event, the newly developed e-recruitment system for the Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM) was officially launched today.

This paperless online job application system aims to make it convenient for applicants to apply for vacant positions without visiting any of the municipality’s offices, completing an application form or making copies of their Curriculum Vitae and other relevant qualifications every time they apply.

It is GRDM’s vision to be a leading, enabling, and inclusive district, so this system will allow vacancies to be advertised, viewed, and applied for online, enhancing recruitment and selection.

During the launch GRDM Municipal Manager, Monde Stratu congratulated the Corporate Service Department, under the leadership of Trix Holtzhausen, and all involved for reaching this stage in terms of recruitment. “A few years ago we started with the process to go paperless, for example with the Council agendas and today is a clear indication by launching the e- recruitment system, we are moving in the right direction,” Stratu said.

To learn more about the system a tutorial video on how to register and apply for a vacancy using the GRDM E-recruitment portal is available at: www.gardenroute.gov.za/apply-for-work/

View related article:

http://www.gardenroute.gov.za/2022/07/01/01-july-2022-media-release-garden-route-district-municipality-launches-electronic-job-application-platform/

31 August 2022 Media Release: Social Housing Event – Own Haven Housing Association Introduced to Stakeholders

Media Release: Social Housing Event – Own Haven Housing Association Introduced to Stakeholders

31 August 2022

On Monday, 29 August 2022, the Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM) held an event at the municipality’s Fire Station in George to introduce the GRDM Social Housing delivery partnership. After the formal activities, stakeholders conducted a walkabout to view the various proposed sites earmarked for possible Affordable Housing delivery. Although the walkabouts took place, the GRDM recognises that normal basic assessments processes would still need to be conducted and interested and affected parties consulted in the future. The related planning and engineering authorities (e.g. zoning and bulk or civil services studies/applications) of the proposed developments are also important. Considerations together with related public comments and eventual indications of support or objections must be considered before any final decisions can be made.

The introduction of Own Haven Housing Company, the appointed Social Rental Housing Delivery partner, was indeed a historic and prestigious moment and necessity as part of the event. It was attended by the Western Cape Government Minister of Infrastructure, MEC Tertuis Simmers, along with a delegation from his office, Mayors and councillors from the Garden Route District, Human Settlement representatives from the local municipalities in the district, and stakeholders and partners. The event truly highlighted the value of cooperative governance and partnership arrangements between different spheres of government in the aim for delivering affordable housing.

In its role as a leading, enabling, and inclusive district, GRDM believes that the key government strategic plans and interventions which emphasize the need for co-planning, co-budgeting, and co-implementation, as encouraged by the Joint Metro Development Approach (JMDA) and District Development Model (DDM), are essential anchors and important levers of the One Plan strategic approach.

In preparation and foundation of the afore-mentioned event, an earlier Memorandum of Agreement had been concluded formally between GRDM and the Western Cape Department of Human Settlements (WC DoHS), committing themselves as public partners to the long-term development objective of providing affordable housing until June 2025.

In addition, the GRDM’s Human Settlements Department earlier this year held a Strategic consultative workshop on 25th March 2022 with all the projected its development partners and stakeholders during which the concept of an Integrated District Approach to Human Settlement was advocated and promoted. More significantly, GRDM Human Settlement Department intention to align its functions with the local municipalities is an appropriate attempt to meet the requirements of co-planning, co-budgeting and co– implementation, was discussed. GRDM’s Integrated Human Settlements Strategic Plan and Human Settlements Sector Plan were also approved by the GRDM Council this year. According to Mr Mkunqwana of the GRDM’s Human Settlements Unit, these will guide and map the envisaged long-term development of affordable housing typologies in well located areas which spatially promote socio-economic integration and sustainability.

During the well-attended event, focus was placed on GRDM’s long term commitment to affordable housing, represented by the following housing products in well located areas:
• Social Rental Housing;
• FLISP/GAP Individual Home Ownership Schemes; and
• Inclusionary Housing.

Own Haven Housing Company Managing Director, Mr A Wiseman, delivered a brief background on how his company was established twenty years ago and their experience in the social housing sector. He explained how Own Haven initiated a partnership with a Dutch social housing company who were experts in this field, and with the East London Municipality at the time. In this way, South Africans and its broader context were introduced to the concept of social housing.

“We were established as the developer and management entity of the first housing project that was developed between Dunkin House Housing Association in the Netherlands and East London Municipality, a mere 380 units situated just outside Dunkin Village. Also, to offer a housing career to its residents, key to the presentation is that social housing is a permanent rental accommodation opportunity for its residents. They may over time choose to migrate to preferred alternative forms of individual ownership. In fact, it is not a rent-to-own or a community-owned model, but a step added to a municipality’s housing options and promotion of mobility in the affordable housing context.

Residents usually stay for four to six years, and as their families grow or their economic status improves or they relocate for work opportunities, they move on, which results in another family staying in the same apartment,” Wiseman said.
Clarification of the roles and responsibilities in delivering and managing rental housing opportunities in well-located areas to facilitate socio-economic integration over the long run was also shared. Also, Own Haven’s role in ensuring mobility from poverty entrapment zones to restructuring zones was elaborated on.

During his address, Alderman Memory Booysen, Executive Mayor of the GRDM told the audience that his adrenaline is pumping because Human Settlements is such an imperative and sensitive matter. “Colleagues in Human Settlements, there will always be tensions; there will always be instigators and “naysayers”. In Bitou, I witnessed trouble makers trying to stop the minister from handing over homes to the beneficiaries. However, I would like to commend Minister Simmers for setting the tone during an event that could have turned disastrous. You stood your ground and you led by example. You showed us that we should not let troublemakers stop the government from forming partnerships with beneficiaries – our communities.”

In his speech, he encouraged officials and attendees not to let anyone stop the delivery of Human Settlements to the communities. The use of human settlements to cause riots will continue and should not deter us as public authorities to offer appropriate affordable housing opportunities. If the good people rise up and stand together, municipalities can accomplish what government promised to do.

On a lighter note, Ald. Booysen explained that a person can enter any shopping centre or ask anybody whether they are in favour of Integrated Human Settlements and the answer will be yes, but the moment people realise that it will happen in their neighbourhood or that it will happen next to them, “then the not in my backyard or neighbourhood syndrome comes forward”. In conclusion Booysen emphasised that this GRDM Social Housing programme is district driven and will benefit all seven municipalities within the Garden Route. According to him, the GRDM is not trying to play big brother, but are in partnership with all the local municipalities in the district and the Western Cape Government in order to make this project a reality. “Only though partnership we will be able to achieve this, so let’s embrace it.”

MEC Simmers, Minister of Infrastructure for the Western Cape Government, spoke about “The essence of affordable housing partnerships – three spheres of government”. This is linked to the currently reviewed MoA concluded between the WC Government and the GRDM which focuses primarily on the following:
• Municipal accreditation
• Enhancement of the internal institutional capacity of the GRDM’ Human Settlements function

Minister Simmers reflected on the time when he started his journey as MEC of the Western Cape Department of Human Settlements in 2019, and explained that he then committed himself to four basic principles, “I chose the word radical for a specific reason; because I believe that you cannot continue doing the same thing and expect a different outcome. If so, you are failing the people you need to lead towards a better quality of life for if we do not do that, we will be failing our people. For that reason, I chose the word radical, because it means different inclinations, innovation and that you can do things and take your key stakeholders along on the journey,” Simmers stated in his speech.

According to MEC Simmers as the Western Cape Government, on our journey to roll out integrated human settlements, we need partnerships. I am glad I was chosen to speak on this topical matter. The reality is the fiscus is getting less and the budgets in terms of Human Settlements are getting smaller. Therefore, the logical thing to do is to expand our base of partnerships,” he said.

MEC Simmers further explained that in 2019 he could not ‘get his head around’ how social housing funding works. “Houses are built; bases are expanded; no profit is made, and multi-million rand budgets are spent. However, at an information session, I learned that partnerships are essential. Also that there is funding available in the world to organisations that have a clear, solid, policy framework. This gives organisations a clear plan on how a budget will be spent.” He shared with the attendees that the GRDM is the first district municipality in WCG history with whom they have entered into a partnership, because in his opinion, a district municipality forms part of the local government ‘family’, although their role may have changed, they still have a mandate to carry out. The MEC encouraged municipalities to work together and to make communities part of their journeys. He called on councillors to become the voice of their communities and to embody the partnerships which honour the visions of the provincial and national governments.

In conclusion, MEC Simmers mentioned that there is a total distortion of what affordable and social housing is, but that affordable housing is the core focus of the WCG. “If you are a councillor and you don’t understand the concepts yet, you really need to wake-up and contact the WCG Human Settlements Department in order to be empowered with the requisite skills. It is said that when you start with the end in mind, you will know what bridges to cross to get you to the end,” he said.

After the formal program, the following sites were visited as potential sites for planned developments:

• Erf 26823, Omega Street, George (owned by GRDM)
• Erven 6236, 6231, 659, 658, CJ Langenhoven Street, George (Owned by the Department of Public Works)
• Erven 140-143, Plantation Road, George (Owned by Department of Public Works)
• Erven 152-155, Barrie Road, George (Owned by Department of Public Works)

The GRDM intends to build therefore the aforementioned affordable housing options based on choice and different needs relative to government gazetted combined monthly income thresholds which are for those earning between R1850 – R22 000 respectively. These consists of FLISP/GAP individual ownership opportunities. Social rental housing opportunities will be developed and managed over the long term by Own Haven, as the formally appointed GRDM Social Housing delivery partner. Individual home ownership schemes like FLISP/GAP on the hand will be handled by the latter or alternatively, by appointed contractors as per the GRDM’s Supply Chain Management procurement processes.

27 August 2022 Media Release: The GRDM salutes a true public servant

Media Release:  The GRDM salutes a true public servant

For immediate release
27 August 2022

The Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM) announces with great sadness the passing of Georg Hendriksz on 23 August 2022. He was a beloved, hardworking and dedicated colleague who started his career at the then Klein Karoo Divisional Council in Oudtshoorn in 1984.

The 63-year-old Georg Hendriksz worked for the GRDM Municipal Health Services in Oudtshoorn for 39 years as an Environmental Health Practitioner.

As a true servant of the public, Hendriksz is remembered by his colleagues as a humble individual who made a significant impact on the lives of many people. “We will forever be grateful for the work he did at the GRDM’s Municipal Health Section. As colleagues, we will truly miss him. ‘May his soul rest in peace,’ said his long-time colleague Desmond Paulse.

27 August 2022 Media Release: LGSETA DISCRETIONARY GRANT 2022/23 ALLOCATIONS FOR GARDEN ROUTE DISTRICT MUNICIPALITY

Media Release:  LGSETA DISCRETIONARY GRANT 2022/23 ALLOCATIONS FOR GARDEN ROUTE DISTRICT MUNICIPALITY

For immediate release
27 August 2022

Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM) receives a major injection for its internal bursaries too from the Local Government Sector Education Training Authority (LGSETA).

When LGSETA opened their funding window in November 2021, the GRDM applied for the LGSETA Discretionary funding. As part of the evaluation process, LGSETA evaluated GRDM’s application in two phases namely a, (a) desktop evaluation and (b) due diligence evaluation.  The LGSETA Board subsequently approved the Discretionary Grant application for the learning interventions and confirmed its intention to enter into a contract with the GRDM and the skills development provider.

On Thursday, 11 August 2022, a letter of intent to accept the allocation was signed by the GRDM Municipal Manager, Mr Monde Stratu.

“We are extremely grateful to LGSETA for providing us with this a much needed award for our internal candidates who are committed to furthering their studies to enhance service delivery. We consider skills development, self-development, and career advancement to be an integral part of an employee’s growth, as they can even benefit you professionally,” said Ms Trix Holtzhausen, Executive Manager of the GRDM Corporate Services.

Ms Holtzhausen further commended her Human Resources Section and acknowledged the vital role the Training Unit consisting of Mr Reginald Salmons, Ms Angeline Naidoo, Ms Angela-Ziva Coetzee and Ms Alvera Joseph during this process.

According to Ms Holtzhausen, the total amount awarded for internal bursaries stands at R1.3 million.  This award will assist employees/students already registered for the current academic year to fund their outstanding fees.

The following is a breakdown of how the funds will be allocated:

25 August 2022 Media Release: 35 Learners from Garden Route district to gain practical experience at local municipalities

Media Release: 35 Learners from Garden Route district to gain practical experience at local municipalities

For immediate release
25 August 2022

Three (3) local municipalities in the Garden Route district, including Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM), recently placed 35 Cape Peninsula University Technology (CPUT) learners in service to gain practical training in several fields.

The training forms part of a Memorandum of Understanding between the Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM), Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) and PSETA, aimed at upskilling learners at Local Government level and provide them with practical training. GRDM, on the other hand, needs to sign agreements with Bitou-, Knysna-, and Hessequa Municipalities in order to host these learners.

Last year, 14 learners were placed at municipalities in the district after CPUT received funding from PSETA. At a meeting between the PSETA representatives in March 2022, when the group of students individually shared their work-based experiences, the PSETA representative commented: “After listening to the testimonies of young people, I can confirm that we invested correctly; you did well by utilising students for the purpose which the program was created for.” The contracts of students ended in May 2022.

After further consultation with PSETA, funding was availed to accommodate these learners for an additional six (6) months, and this time around, 23 more learners were added to the programme.

GRDM was appointed to coordinate the project, which includes supporting each learner through monitoring, evaluation, coaching, and mentoring. Reporting progress to CPUT and PSETA on a regular basis is also required. However, the skills development facilitators within the b-municipalities will assist with the coordination of learners within each municipality.

Learners were enrolled on a Certificate in Public Administration course with CPUT which will provide them with a SAQA ID 91994 Occupational Qualification in Public Office Administrator. Each learner was also provided with a laptop and data on a monthly basis.

The learners were placed as follows:

12 Learners – Garden Route District Municipality
11 Learners – Bitou Municipality
10 Learners – Knysna Municipality
2 Learners – Hessequa Municipality

This project is part of the Garden Route Skills Mecca programme. To learn more about it, visit skillsmecca.gardenroute.gov.za

Photo caption:  Learners stationed at GRDM who gain practical experience in the different departments at the municipality.

ROLL-OVER ADJUSTMENT BUDGET 2022/2023

Notice 98/2022

ROLL-OVER ADJUSTMENT BUDGET 2022/2023

Notice is hereby given that the Garden Route District Municipal Council’s Roll-Over Adjustment Budget for the period 2022/2023-2024/2025, was compiled in accordance with the Local Government: Municipal Finance Management Act 2003 (Act 56 of 2003).

This document was approved by the Garden Route District Municipality at a District Council meeting held on Wednesday, 24 August 2022.

This document will be available for public inspection and comments on the GRDM municipal website www.gardenroute.gov.za from 25 August 2022.

Members of the public is invited to submit written comments or representations to the municipality in respect of this document. All comments and inputs must be directed to “The Municipal Manager, Garden Route District Municipality, 54 York Street, George 6530”.

Please contact the Budget Manager (Ms Louise Hoek) at 044 803 1300 with any enquiries.

Click on the links below and download/view the official documents.

2022/23 Council Resolution: Roll-over Adjustment Budget (24 August 2022) – PUBLIC NOTICE

2022/23 Council Resolution: Roll-over Adjustment Budget Report (24 August 2022)

2022/23 Council Resolution: Roll-over Adjustment Budget (24 August 2022)