An Economically Segregated Society
South Africa is a multicultural society, which in many ways is unparalleled in the diversity of its people, cultures and natural resources. While South Africa boasts one of the higher incomes per capita in Africa, it also struggles with one of the highest rates of income inequality in the world. On the other hand, the country has a progressive constitution, a vibrant civil society and stable economic growth.
IDEX in South Africa
Apartheid, or institutionalized racial segregation came to a legal end in 1994. But the country still faces economic segregation and lingering social consequences of the apartheid regime. All South Africans were segregated into three race classifications based purely on appearance – Whites, Blacks and Coloreds. This determined their access to land ownership, employment, education, vocational training, health and natural resources.
Generations of systematic neglect and inequity continue to push people deeper into poverty in spite of economic growth. South Africans also argue that the few government resources reach rural communities and townships. This continues to keep Blacks and mixed race people in poverty.
The Burden on Women
Generations of systematic neglect and inequity continue to push people deeper into poverty despite the country’s overall economic growth.
Women in South Africa bear the brunt of the HIV/AIDS pandemic. They carry the country’s workload and provide care for children, elders, neighbors, and orphans. Crippling poverty prevents women from maintaining proper nutrition or accessing health care. Stigma around the disease prevents many South Africans from accessing preventive care and getting tested regularly. The magnitude of the disease creates a financial struggle in addition to an emotional toll effecting long-term economic development.
The culture of resistance to unjust laws and unfair practices remains alive in post-apartheid South Africa. In response, IDEX seeks out community groups in South Africa that are meeting local needs and creating sustainable solutions to address root causes of poverty. IDEX partners provide training on sustainable agriculture, business skills and promote awareness of legal rights. But just as critically, they empower people to confront the HIV and AIDS crisis, overcome their fears, and manage their illnesses.
IDEX currently works with Positive Women’s Network and Hlomelikusasa and has six catalyst grantees in South Africa.
Already a donor? We want to hear from you!
Take our Donor Survey.
IDEX identifies, evaluates, and grows the best ideas from local leaders and organizations to alleviate poverty and injustice around the world. Grants to our international partners come entirely from our network of passionate and engaged supporters. Please donate to IDEX today.