For South Africa to become a society free from poverty,
government and civil society organisations need to come together.
The National Development Agency (NDA) is tasked with contributing towards the eradication of poverty
and its causes in South Africa, by strengthening the capacity of civil society organisations to effectively
and effi ciently provide services to the poor communities that they serve.
It is an agency of government under the national Department of Social Development.
Its mission is to facilitate sustainable development by strengthening civil society organisations involved in poverty eradication through enhanced grant-funding and research.
As the Chief Executive Offi cer (CEO) of the NDA, Thamo Mzobe’s job is to translate strategies of government into a tangible service to deserving benefi ciaries.
She joined the NDA in 2012 as a Provincial Manager in KwaZuluNatal
and was promoted to facilitate stakeholder relations as a senior manager in 2013.
Hard work saw her progressing up the ranks and she was appointed as CEO in 2016.
Servant leader “I don’t take being a CEO as a status but as a responsibility.
As a servant leader, I am always looking for ways to make people’s lives easier,” she said.
“My role is to make sure that I unpack the vision of government into changing lives of the people through strategies.
It is my role to ensure that the NDA is doing justice to the community,” she added.
Mzobe’s personal goal is to ensure that the bureaucratic practices that exist in government do not become a barrier or frustration to communities wanting to access services.
She spoke to PSM about the role that the NDA plays in eradicating poverty and facilitating sustainable development.
“Our main role is to mobilise grants to support civil society organisations that have poverty eradication programmes.
We receive about R200 million annually from parliament to do our work, including administration.
That is not a lot of money, but we have been
able to make strides with it,” she said.
Development actors The agency recognises that civil society organisations are development actors that contribute to economic, social
and demo ratic development to achieve the shared goals of eradicating poverty and improving the lives of benefi ciary communities.
The NDA serves as a catalyst to harness the efforts of civil society organisations.
Mzobe said this year alone the agency has approved funding for more than 200 civil society organisations across the country
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