The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU), The Council of Trade Unions (NACTU), and The Federation of Unions of South Africa (FEDUSA) founded the Job Creation Trust at the Presidential Job Summit of 1998, by asking workers to donate one day’s wage and companies’ one day’s profit. It was an attempt by organized labour to contribute and fight against unemployment in South Africa, which stood at the time at 37%, and other social ills such as rime, disease and poverty. The Trust was able to raise R89 million mainly from members. The operations of the Trust were formalized on 30 October 1998 by a Trust Deed. On the 15th September 2000 the JCT and the DBSA entered into an agreement where the DBSA would provide its expertise in project management and administration services at cost. Included in the package for project management was the establishment of a database into which applications would be recorded and ultimately rated for consideration using the following criteria:
- Involvement of the community to ensure that a whole community is empowered. Ensuring the involvement of the community not only forces the community to mobolise and work together to challenges of poverty, but also it increases the chances of the projects being sustainable, ensures good governance and accountability.
- Improvement of social infrastructure and public productive infrastructure to assist in reducing some of the backlogs left by apartheid which made it difficult for communities to participate in the economic activities of the country.
- To be labour intensive, have a multiplier effect and be viable and sustainable.
- There was a regional bias towards provinces with the greatest poverty and highest unemployment.
- The Trust is governed by a board of trustees that serves as the custodians of the policies and direction of the Trust as well as approving of funding applications. None of the Trustees are remunerated for their services.
The Trust is governed by a board of trustees that serves as the custodians of the policies and direction of the Trust as well as approving of funding applications. None of the Trustees are remunerated for their services. Job Creation Trust have made and still is currently making significant impact Nationally in all the provinces with contributing to job creation, poverty alleviation, and development objectives in various sectors e.g. agriculture, textile manufacture industry, youth in the tourism industry.
The Trust felt it appropriate at the time to solicit applications for projects though advertising in the print and electronic media in 2000. This resulted in approximately 3400 applications to the value of R4-billion. By June 2001 the DBSA had completed the initial stages of the programme. In September 2001 the first Job Creation Project was launched in Limpopo province, to date 113 projects to the value of R87 million have been funded and committed from 2001 to 2010