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During the Western Cape Service Excellence Awards, the Tirelo Bosha project won a silver award in the Best Public Service Innovator Category. The project wants to implement a fairer housing allocation through settlement surveys and GPS tracing of applicants in informal settlements.
Every year the province of the Western Cape in South Africa hosts its Service Excellence Awards. This is an opportunity to evaluate the progress made by the regional government, as well as to acknowledge the achievements of the public servants.
This 2017 edition has been a success for the GPS Enhancement to the Western Cape Housing Demand Database project, which is part of the Tirelo Bosha Public Service Improvement Facility, funded by Belgium in cooperation with the Department of Public Service and Administration.
In the category of Best Public Service Innovator (project/team), the GPS project won a silver award. It has the aim to implement a fairer housing allocation through settlement surveys and GPS tracing of applicants in informal settlements. These settlements pose a major challenge for many municipalities in South Africa in terms of resources, social services and poverty reduction.
Therefore, it was opted to develop an informal settlement housing demand register and to record socio-economic data of people living in these informal settlements. A field for GPS coordinates was added to the database, which links the applicant to GPS coordinates in order to make sure that the applicants in informal settings are not missed out. All these activities will assist with the spatial identification of households registered in the Western Cape Housing Demand Database, but also with the spatial identification of households in informal settlements for improved housing opportunities. The enhancement of the database and selection process benefits the most vulnerable of the community and gives a clearer view of their needs and demands.
Furthermore, The Government Technical Advisory Centre of the South African National Treasury was even asked to undertake a replication assessment of this project. Eventually, this report led to the approval of a replication of this project in two other municipalities (Breede Valley and Drakenstein), which is currently in the start-up phase.