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What Donors Have Done

Around 80% of C4L's revenue since it launched its campus in 1999 has come from Donors and SETAs, so this section is dedicated to recognizing what Grantmakers have done.  

Donors have multiplied the contributions raised at other levels.  For example, when C4L launched Orchard Camp in 2005, the facility itself was built with a combination of resources from churches and Canadian NGOs along with Volunteer labour.  This triggered the approval of matching funds from donors that flowed in on a much larger scale.  This inter-play of different income streams is mission-critical.

SETAs have taken C4L's prize-winning role in Social Innovation seriously.  For example the Green Livelihoods initiative of "spreading the wealth" by providing Skiils Programmes to many youth instead of Learnerships to relatively few.  Given the scale of youth unemployment this was a no-brainer but C4L preferred to offer a "starter" to 1000 youth than full learnerships to 240 (roughly the same cost overall).


Failing Forward

Not all social innovation is successful.  For example, C4L set up an on-line mentoring facility for NPOs.  Only to find that the "digital divide" is still wider than expected.  Global Inequality is such that most CBOs and FBOs did not have the minimum requirements in terms of software and connectivity to access it. 

State Capture also started weakening state institutions and Telkom was no exception.  In 2010 we were told that there would be fibre-optic cable to the C4L campus within two years.  It is only arriving in 2022!

Another example is the effect that corruption has had on the Department of Water and Sanitation.  It was said to be a better bet than C4L's grassroots approach with cooperatives and TRE's (township and rural enterprises).  Only in 2022 - after the Zondo Commission closed - has the level of indicretion come to light.  It had a devastating effect on the War on Leaks, which was said to be the best bet for practicums and deployment.  Not so!


Two years of Covid crisis has pushed the whole world faster towards remote learning.  So C4L is exploring how to revive this on-line mentoring initiative, out of hibernation, and get it going at long last.


Innovation will work best when there is a freedom to fail.  Yet on the whole Donors and SETAs are cautious about innovative approaches and this adds to the concentration of resources and could be one reason why such a high percentage of nonprofits in South Africa have ended up under-funded and thus non-compliant.


Corporate Social Investment

At C4L the terms "donor funding" and "CSI" are more or less synonymous.  We don't make a big distinction between foundations or corporates and government funding.  The point is really that they are large-scale.

The Kellogg Foundation is an example of one such donor that made a generous contribution.

The ABSA Foundation is really a corporate (ABSA is the branding for Barclay's Bank in South Africa) that has also donated repeatedly to C4L.

Canadian, American, British and German agencies have all contributed as well, on different occasions.

The biggest single grant ever received by C4L was from the Energy and Water SETA - a South African government window of funding through a "discretionary grant".

The reports and evaluations that were submitted as part of due process are not enough - we must say a heart-felt "Siyabonga!" here once again for all these generous gifts.