In February 2015, opposition parties disrupted the President’s State of the Nation Address, and the State Security Agency used a signal jammer to prevent media from communicating during the address.
In March, xenophobic attacks directed at refugees and migrants took place in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal. Again, thousands of people were displaced and their possessions looted or destroyed. OSF-SA together with OSISA convened a partners’ meeting in Durban to assess the situation and to make special grants to organisations providing humanitarian and legal services in the aftermath of the violence. OSF-SA convened a special two-day migration reform workshop at Liliesleaf, Rivonia, during November 2015.
Access to higher education was a key part of South Africa’s body politic in 2015. In March, the #RhodesMustFall Campaign was launched by students at the University of Cape Town and by October students were marching to Parliament and the Union Buildings to share their funding demands. They were arrested, shot at with rubber bullets, and dispersed with tear gas. Some were charged with treason. During #FeesMustFall, OSF-SA staff volunteered to support students and mobilised legal and other resources from amongst its grantee network, including when students in Cape Town were assaulted by the police and arrested/charged after protesting at Parliament.
In June, The Marikana Commission Report (Farlam Commission) was released. In December 2015, Minister of Finance Nhlanhla Nene was fired by President Zuma and replaced by David Van Rooyen, for just one weekend.
In 2015, 100 organisations were supported with the emphasis being on assisting organisations with young leadership, as well as racial and gender inclusivity.
OSF-SA continued to develop its strategic outlook, with a commitment to fund work activities that had a sustainable, long-term, and measurable effect on human rights, justice and equality, transparency and accountability, and freedom of expression and information. OSF-SA created a dedicated Grant Support Unit in 2015, further consolidating and streamlining its financial systems.
In 2015, OSF-SA grantees developed #MineAlert, an online mobile app to make available related mining licenses to the general public. In addition, OSF-SA participated in two OSF network-wide Shared Frameworks on Access to Justice. In 2015, OSF-SA supported the development of training manuals, learning exchanges, and the establishment of the first South African Social Audit Network.
In December 2015, OSF-SA hosted its 2nd Annual Meet-and-Greet with staff and grantees. The Inaugural Social Justice Through the Lens Photography Competition was launched.
2015 grants: 100