The Covid-19 pandemic is having a devastating impact, destabilising the economy and putting pressure on already fragile livelihoods and communities. Restrictions on trade have led to reduced imports and price hikes impacting both industry and consumers. Businesses have suffered further through loss of trade caused by the restrictions on movement and limits on gatherings. Rising costs and declining revenue have forced many businesses to close or scale down, leading to job losses and declining household incomes. Unsurprisingly, the fourth quarter of 2020 saw a steep increase in the unemployment rate, with the youth being the most affected.
In his televised public address on Freedom Day, 27 April 2020, President Ramaphosa acknowledged the impact of the national lockdown: “For millions, this has been a month of misery, of breadwinners not working, of families struggling to survive and of children going to bed and waking up hungry.”
At False Bay TVET College, whose campuses are located in some of the most vulnerable communities of Cape Town, it has become clear that the student population is deeply affected by the increased levels of poverty and unemployment sparked by the pandemic. As a caring institution, the College must be able to respond to the social and economic challenges faced by the vast majority of our student population. The problems of hunger and food insecurity particularly require an urgent response.
To read more on the article titled “Growing a sustainable response to food insecurity” click here.