SERSA Programme: Promoting the rights of small scale farmers, farm workers and farm dwellers

This Call aims to support practical interventions bringing more people into productive activity that is directly beneficial to their households, and which aims to improve the lives of farm workers and farm dwellers on commercial farms.

Call Number : SERSA/RA1.4.2/S02

Call Shortcode : SERSA/RA1.4.2/S02

Result Area : Access to Justice

Closing Date : 2014-08-22 01:54:00

Expression of Interest : 160714_CfP_SERSA_Support_to_Farm_Dwellers_and_Small-Scale_Farmers.pdf (click to download)

The Foundation for Human Rights (the Foundation) is a grant-making institution. It supports civil society organisations in South Africa implementing programmes that promote and protect human rights. The Foundation's mission is to address the historical legacy of apartheid, to promote and advance transformation and to build a human rights culture, using the Constitution as a tool.

The Foundation, in partnership with the Government of Flanders has embarked on the “Participation and Development of Capabilities of Civil Society in realising Socio-Economic Rights in South Africa” (SERSA) Programme.  The SERSA Programme is an extension of the Access to Justice and Promotion of Constitutional Rights Programme (AJPCR) with which it shares the objectives of improving access to justice, raising awareness of constitutional rights and participation of civil society.

The focus of the SERSA Programme is on the following specific sub-result areas:

•          Land reform and land tenure;
•          Food security;
•          Socio-economic rights and job creation;
•          Small scale and subsistence farming;
•          Climate change.

Call for Proposals

Promoting the rights of small-scale farmers, farm workers and farm dwellers

Reference No: SERSA/RA1.4.2/S02

Closing Date for Applications: 22 August 2014


Most food consumed in South Africa comes from large-scale commercial production. Yet this model faces both ecological and social limits. Ecologically commercial production is over-dependent on fossil fuels for inputs and distribution and the pool of seeds and other genetic resources is shrinking. The availability of new land and water is coming to an end while existing land and water is being polluted and degraded. This long-term ecological crisis is compounded by the social crisis caused by technology’s displacement of productive human activity. Small-scale farming mostly cannot compete with large-scale production.

Although there are millions of small-scale food producers, dedicated support is usually only provided to those perceived as potential participants in these agribusiness-dominated markets. The majority are left to fend for themselves in adverse conditions even though food production makes an important contribution to household and local food security.

This Call aims to support practical interventions bringing more people into productive activity that is directly beneficial to their households, and which aims to improve the lives of farm workers and farm dwellers on commercial farms. Proposals will be considered if they focus on support for access to resources; and if they facilitate ecologically and socially sustainable small-scale and subsistence agriculture. Proposals focused on improving the living and working conditions of farm workers and dwellers, including tenure security and access to land for productive use will also be considered.

The Call supports advocacy, mobilisation, technical and organisational capacity building.

Who can apply?

Applicant organizations should meet the following criteria in order to be considered eligible:

  1. Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) working in Limpopo and/or KwaZulu-Natal and/or Free State provinces. However, priority will be given to organisations working in the Free State province.
  2. Be registered, or in the process of registering as a nonprofit non-government organisation (NGO), a nonprofit community-based organisation (CBO), section 21 company/nonprofit company (NPC), or a nonprofit trust;
  3. Have a track record of working with farm workers and dwellers and/or historically disadvantaged small-scale farmers, and in particular be engaged in projects that support secure land access and tenure and/or small-scale agricultural production;
  4. Demonstrate that the proposed project will involve active community participation.

Successful applicants will be awarded a maximum grant of R120 000

Application Guidelines

The full guidelines for applications to the above Calls for Proposals can be found on the Foundation’s website www.fhr.org.za.  Alternatively, copies of the document may be requested from the Foundation. For more information please contact the Grants Unit at (011) 720-1276 or at grantsunit(at)fhr.org.za.

Applications that do not comply with the guidelines will be rejected.  The Foundation also reserves the right to cancel at its sole discretion any of the Calls published through any media.

All applications must be posted or hand-delivered. Emailed applications will not be processed. All posted or hand-delivered applications must be placed in a sealed envelope indicating the name of the applicant and the reference number of the call and delivered, on or before the application deadline, to:

Physical Address

The Grants Manager
Foundation for Human Rights
3rd Floor, 222 Smit Street (corner Rissik Street) Braamfontein

Postal Address

The Grants Manager
Foundation for Human Rights
Private Bag 124
Braamfontein, 2017