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Reflection and Analysis

Browse our collection of articles that reflect on and/or offer useful analysis on the 10 opportunities for social change that form the basis of our five-year strategy.

(Click on each block to explore more)

1 Drive public innovation by reigniting civil society

Unsung heroines in the field of development: Julie Mentor

30 August 2017

Julie Mentor shares her journey in the field of development as the fourth and final interviewee of our Women’s Month series, which aims to celebrate the lesser-known women in the sector making an impact where they are, with whatever resources they have. Hi Julie, please tell us a bit about yourself. I’m a very proud […]

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Unsung heroines in the field of development: Alice Phirime

25 August 2017

Alice Phirime shares her journey in the field of development as the third interviewee of our Women’s Month series, which aims to celebrate the lesser-known women in the sector  – making an impact where they are, with whatever resources they have. Hi Alice, please tell us a bit about yourself. My name is Mosebatho Alice […]

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Unsung heroines in the field of development: Jean Motaung

16 August 2017

Jean Motaung shares her journey in the field of development as the second interviewee of our Women’s Month series, which aims to spotlight the lesser-known women in the sector making an impact where they are, with whatever resources they have. Hi Jean, please tell us a bit about yourself. In the early years of my […]

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Celebrating women’s month with the unsung heroines in the field of development: Julita Dorman

8 August 2017

Women’s Month stories often focus on renowned women. This series aims to celebrate some of the women we have worked with in development who you may not yet know about, but who have made an impact where they are, with whatever resources they have had. Each woman has a valuable journey consisting of trials, learnings […]

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2 Release the systemic chokes on innovation that are perpetuated by exclusion

Celebrating women’s month with the unsung heroines in the field of development: Julita Dorman

8 August 2017

Women’s Month stories often focus on renowned women. This series aims to celebrate some of the women we have worked with in development who you may not yet know about, but who have made an impact where they are, with whatever resources they have had. Each woman has a valuable journey consisting of trials, learnings […]

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The same but different … mediating meaningful employment for persons with disabilities

19 February 2015

This learning brief considers how the uptake of persons with disabilities as sought-after employees might be facilitated. Recommendations are also provided for the role that industry could play in facilitating best-fit employment opportunities for persons with disabilities. Read the article here

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Preparing for an Ageing Population – Policy Implications for South Africa

11 September 2014

South Africa’s fertility rate is declining and it is projected that this trend will continue. When persistent low fertility leads to a decline in the size of successive birth cohorts, it means that the population will start ageing. In this learning brief, HelpAge International considers what this means for the demands that will inevitably be placed on […]

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3 Create unlikely networks to stimulate positive change

Unlock, inspire, include: How unlikely networks push us forward

18 October 2017

DGMT’s strategy and 10 opportunities to change South Africa are clearly set out. Still, some of these opportunities are easier to grasp than others: for example, most people would immediately understand what it means to give every child the benefit of early childhood development. The steps to achieving that are also clear, even if there are […]

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A compelling business proposition: Create value at no extra cost

11 October 2017

Just over a decade ago, a senior official at national Treasury told me that Government was “awash with money”. Not anymore. Cost-cutting is the order of the day. Things are only going to get tighter after the medium-term budget policy statement on 25th October. We will all feel sick to the pit of our stomachs […]

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Language development to reshape the national economy

24 October 2014

This article by DGMT CEO, David Harrison, was first published in the City Press on the 19th of October 2014. What you do when you’ve stared at the same problem for years and still can’t figure out how to solve it?  You frame it differently. See it through someone else’s eyes. So the next time […]

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The role of grant-making foundations in South Africa

8 October 2012

The D G Murray Trust, and a number of DGMT funded projects, had the priviledge to be involved in the Towards Carnegie 3 conference held in Cape Town last month. The conference entitled ‘Strategies to Overcome Poverty and Inequality’ was styled as the Third Carnegie Conference (following on from that organised in 1932 and 1984), and aimed […]

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4 Give every child the benefit of early childhood development

What a difference the Child Support Grant makes!

7 March 2017

The South African Child Gauge 2016 by the Children’s Institute at the University of Cape Town has recently been released and – focusing the theme of Children and Social Assistance – it offers an interesting spotlight on the Child Support Grant (CSG).  Here follows some very encouraging facts shared in the publication relating to the benefits of the CSG […]

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Unlocking the economic value of young children

27 May 2016

First published on Business Day Live, 27 May 2016 Most business people are hard-nosed and soft-hearted. This has been my experience in trying to galvanise corporate support for social development over the past 25 years. These are exactly the attributes needed to find economically sound solutions to the country’s social problems. However, corporate professionals often act […]

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The “ordinary magic” that can change a child’s future

11 May 2016

This article was first published in the Star on 9 May 2016 Since 27 April 2015, ‘Mandela’s children’ have been turning twenty-one. They are the first of the ‘born-free generation’ to become adults. Are they better off than young adults were in the early nineties? It’s a difficult question to ask at the best of […]

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Radio interviews: David Harrison talks about the potential of ECD and reading for joy

14 September 2015

On World Literacy Day last week (8 September 2015), DGMT CEO, David Harrison was interviewed by Tim Modise from Power FM, John Maytham on Cape Talk and SA FM’s The Talk Show. He talked about DGMT, our work and that of our implementing partners, but most importantly he explained why early childhood development and helping children to […]

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5 Stop nutritional stunting among children under two years

What a difference the Child Support Grant makes!

7 March 2017

The South African Child Gauge 2016 by the Children’s Institute at the University of Cape Town has recently been released and – focusing the theme of Children and Social Assistance – it offers an interesting spotlight on the Child Support Grant (CSG).  Here follows some very encouraging facts shared in the publication relating to the benefits of the CSG […]

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The enormous concentration of economic power in young children: Time to tap it

23 August 2016

The JC Coetzee Memorial Lecture delivered by DGMT CEO, Dr. David Harrison,  at the 19th Annual Family Practitioners’s Conference on 13 August 2016  Introduction It really is an honour to be invited to give the JC Coetzee Memorial Lecture today. I trust the organisers of the conference have not strayed too far from his wishes […]

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The “ordinary magic” that can change a child’s future

11 May 2016

This article was first published in the Star on 9 May 2016 Since 27 April 2015, ‘Mandela’s children’ have been turning twenty-one. They are the first of the ‘born-free generation’ to become adults. Are they better off than young adults were in the early nineties? It’s a difficult question to ask at the best of […]

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David Harrison on the urgent need for child and mother nutrition

9 April 2015

7 April was World Health Day.  During an interview on CNBC Africa’s programme Open Exchange, our CEO, David Harrison explains how improving the nutrition of children can dramatically improve the economic growth of Africa.

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6 Make sure every child is ready to read by the time they go to school

Creating a Story-Powered Nation

7 September 2017

“Reading opens up new worlds. It gives us power – to learn new things, tell our own stories, and shape our futures”.  [Extract from a Story-Powered Nation] At DGMT we often talk about the importance of reading, of ensuring that children are ready to read when they go to school. We believe it is a key […]

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How to make sense of mother-tongue instruction debates

2 May 2017

Many parents find the debates about mother-tongue instruction very confusing.  All they want to know is “what is best for my child”? Is it better to introduce English sooner or later?  Will my child get mixed up if she learns more than one language at the same time?  Is it best to send her to […]

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Your Mandela Day to-do list: Grow empathy, connect to others, take action – but choose wisely

18 July 2016

The message behind Mandela Day is that we all have the ability and responsibility to change the world for the better.  In theory many people agree with this sentiment, judging from the 2.8K likes that a Nelson Mandela quote like “our society needs to re-establish a culture of caring” can garner on the Nelson Mandela […]

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“Your child is also my child” – becoming part of an “army of adults” reading to children

8 June 2016

First published by the Sowetan on 2 June 2016. We often hear about South Africa’s dismal education outcomes and low literacy rates. We have also been hearing that early literacy, reading for joy, and growing up around books can change the life trajectories of individuals and dramatically improve our society.   Yet we hear much less […]

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7 Build simple, loving connections for every child

The “ordinary magic” that can change a child’s future

11 May 2016

This article was first published in the Star on 9 May 2016 Since 27 April 2015, ‘Mandela’s children’ have been turning twenty-one. They are the first of the ‘born-free generation’ to become adults. Are they better off than young adults were in the early nineties? It’s a difficult question to ask at the best of […]

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Helping our children reach their full potential by growing the building blocks of food, love, security and stimulation

1 July 2013

How can we fix our education system?  That question preoccupies our national mind – and not without cause. We fail to prepare enough people for basic jobs, let alone to sustain a sophisticated knowledge economy.  If that is the question, the inevitable answer is that we need good teachers, quality textbooks and enough time in […]

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Early love creating a lifelong inheritance: The story of Gogo Pumla Jayiya

19 June 2012

I first came to know Gogo[1] Pumla Jayiya when both of us were involved with the HIV prevention campaign for youth, loveLife where we worked in different capacities on their goGogetter Programme, designed to encourage support for orphaned and vulnerable youth by local grandmothers.  To be honest, it is hard not to take note of […]

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8 Place failing schools ‘under new management’ so that children can succeed

Public-school partnerships: Healthy scepticism, yes. Paralysing caution, no.

19 May 2017

Is every non-State institution a private company driven by profit and neoliberal tendencies? This is the question that critics of public school partnerships need to answer. Almost all criticism of the Collaboration Schools model being tested in South Africa fails to make the distinction between civil society organisations and for-profit companies in public education. These […]

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Collaboration Schools – concentrating energy and expertise in the poorest public schools

21 October 2016

By David Harrison This article was first published in the Daily Maverick on 20 October 2016.  Equal Education has joined trade unions in calling for the draft Western Cape Provincial School Amendment Act to be abandoned because, among other things, it makes provision for a new category of public schools. These schools, called Collaboration Schools, […]

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How collaboration can bring better prospects to children

14 March 2016

This article was first published in The Star on 14 March 2016. Can new forms of partnership bring better prospects to children in public schools in poor communities?  This is the intention of the Collaboration Schools project to test a new model of public school partnership in the Western Cape. It will bring in non-profit […]

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How can teachers be assisted to use learner results to inform effective teaching?

31 May 2013

Significant improvements in learning can take place when teachers and learners are able to obtain and use information to help them establish where learners are in their learning.  JET carried out a pilot project to determine whether teachers could analyse and use common task assessment data, leading them to adapt their teaching strategies to improve […]

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9 Create new connections to opportunity for young people

Youth will shape the South Africa of tomorrow – let’s get behind them today

17 February 2017

Every January we as South Africans focus our full attention on the successes, and failures, of the education system as marked by the Matric results. We celebrate the individual shining examples of extraordinarily bright students, of inspiring principals that produce amazing results against all the odds, and take a step back to assess how we […]

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Casting some light on the new 3 Stream Schooling System 2017

11 April 2016

Over the last few months there has been talk of a new schooling system planned for South Africa. In January, a few online articles appeared but the detail has been lacking and equivocal. Through a discussion hosted by the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation (IJR) in February, we managed to unearth a little more. The […]

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Five things to think about beyond matric results

7 January 2016

Every January the whole country focusses in on a single number: the matric pass rate. For many this number comes to define the state of young people, and we tend to leave the conversation there. But for school-leavers, the matric results are not just the end of one journey, they are the start of a […]

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The South African Child Gauge 2015: Youth – an opportunity to interrupt the intergenerational transmission of poverty

16 November 2015

The 10th issue of the South African Child Gauge, focusing on the theme of youth and the intergenerational transmission of poverty, was released last week on the 10th of November [2015] by the University of Cape Town’s Children’s Institute.  It examines the situation of young people aged 15 – 24 and highlights the need for a range of interventions that continue to […]

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10 Support young people to keep their grip on opportunity

Where did the other half go? What is driving school dropout in South Africa?

24 August 2017

Most 17 year olds are attending school and will soon write their matric exam, even if not all of them pass. Right?  No! By the time a class of 30 children reaches grade 12, 50% of their peers have already left school without even making it to the grade where their can write matric. This […]

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Five things to think about beyond matric results

7 January 2016

Every January the whole country focusses in on a single number: the matric pass rate. For many this number comes to define the state of young people, and we tend to leave the conversation there. But for school-leavers, the matric results are not just the end of one journey, they are the start of a […]

READ MORE

The South African Child Gauge 2015: Youth – an opportunity to interrupt the intergenerational transmission of poverty

16 November 2015

The 10th issue of the South African Child Gauge, focusing on the theme of youth and the intergenerational transmission of poverty, was released last week on the 10th of November [2015] by the University of Cape Town’s Children’s Institute.  It examines the situation of young people aged 15 – 24 and highlights the need for a range of interventions that continue to […]

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The Work Preparation Programme: Facilitating the college to work transition

11 September 2015

With the third highest youth unemployment rate in the world at 24.3%, creative solutions are required to enhance the work readiness and skills of school leavers in our country. Increasingly, across Africa as well as in Europe, technical and vocational skills development (TVSD) – or “the acquisition of knowledge, practical competencies, knowhow and attitudes necessary to […]

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