HOW do SASSA grants compare to

HOW do SASSA grants compare to 30-years ago?

Billions of Rands are spent annually on endowments to the poor, but how do SASSA grants compare to 30-years ago?

HOW do SASSA grants compare to

How do SASSA grants compare to the same social welfare endowments from 30-years ago? Well, the crucial factor for the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) is adjusting for inflation, reports GroundUp.

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There is no denying that social grants have contributed to a reduction in poverty since apartheid. More than 18 million people receive social endowments from SASSA each month. That accounts for 11% of the country’s national budget. And the International Monetary Fund (IMF) says these grants can cover 60% household expenditure of poorest 20% of the population.


Increase to SASSA Child Support Grants
UN-backed report urged Increase to SASSA Child Support Grants. Picture: File/Fotor.

Looking at it closely, the Old Age Grant has increased from R390 to R2 090. But when adjusted for inflation, it has pretty much stayed the same. Thankfully, it has tracked above the upper-bound poverty line of R1 417 in 2022.

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A Foster Care Grant is paid per foster child to cover the costs of raising that child. Unfortunately, this is one instance where it compares poorly to 30-years ago. It has not kept pace with inflation and is only slightly above the lower-bound food poverty line (R1 130 in 2022).


SASSA Foster Child Grant
The SASSA Foster Child Grant scheme is administered by the South African Social Security Agency. Picture: File/Fotor.

Since it was introduced, the Child Support Grant has reducing food poverty immensely. It was first made available in 2012 and is valid to children up to the age of 18. While it has stayed close to the food poverty line (R510 per month currently), experts are concerned that if the Department of Social Development (DSD) does not increase it, it will no longer be sufficient to arrest child poverty.

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In cases of the Child Support, Foster Care and Old Age Grants, experts say they are often used to maintain larger households. This indirectly brings the average per person income within the household below the upper-bound poverty line.

Grant TypeRecipients thenRecipients nowValue
Child Support Grant353 000 in 199813.2-million in 2022R510 in 2023
Foster Child Grant42 000 in 1996274 000 in 2022R1 130 in 2023
Old Age Grant1.63-million in 20223.9-million in 2022R2 090 in 2023
Disability Grant600 000 in 19941 035 000 in 2022R2 090 in 2023
Child Care Dependency10 000 in 1997157 000 in 2022R2 090 in 2023

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How do SASSA grants compare to 30-years ago? Be sure to share your thoughts with our audience in the comments section below. And don’t forget to follow us @TheSANews on X and The South African on Facebook for the latest updates.