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Rural Development and Human Settlements

The Rural Development Framework of 1997 defines rurality as a way of life, a state of mind and a culture which revolves around land, livestock, cropping, use of natural resources and community. Rural settlements include sparsely populated and widely dispersed settlements in the former homelands, created by the apartheid planning system of segregation, which have an economy based on external transfers for survival such as migratory labour, social grants and remittances.Rural development and land reform is dedicated to the social and economic development of rural areas in South Africa and human settlements. It is committed to ensuring that all residents within rural South Africa have the same level of access and benefits as their counterparts residing in urban areas. The delivery of rural development is facilitated by the Comprehensive Rural Development Programme (CRDP) and the Agrarian Transformation Strategy. The vision of the CRDP is to create vibrant, equitable and sustainable rural communities including contributing to the redistribution of 30% of the country’s agricultural land, improving food security of the rural poor, creation of business or economic opportunities, decongesting and rehabilitation of over-crowded former homelands; and expanding opportunities for the marginalized groups (women, youth, people with disabilities and old people).

Human settlements is the provision and creation of sustainable and adequate human settlements as well as improved quality of household life. It is underpinned by a number of legislative frameworks, policies and strategic programmes. The Housing Act No 107 of 1997, Section 2 sets out the Principles for Housing Development which are applicable to all housing development including rural housing, two of which includes the prioritization of housing needs for the poor; and racial social, economic and physical integration in urban and rural areas. The Housing Code, 2009 sets the underlying the principles, guidelines and norms and standards which apply to government’s various housing assistance programmes. The purpose of this guide is to provide3 an easy to understand overview of various housing subsidy instruments available to assist low income households to access adequate housing

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