The Learning Lunch podcast explores ideas, approaches and social innovations – creating opportunity for non-profit organisations’ teams to discover what others are learning and space to reflect on what these insights might mean for their own strategy and programme implementation.

In recent years, non-profit organisations (NPOs) have grappled with dwindling donor funding and reduced support from government departments, affecting their ability to provide crucial social welfare and development services to communities. These organisations are part of a care economy that supports children in places of safety, people living with disabilities and the elderly, to name just some of the beneficiaries of their work.

During the Covid pandemic, the situation worsened for many of these organisations due to delayed payments from government. Consequently, some had to sell off assets or retrench staff, affecting their operations.

Join us as we delve into the critical role of NPOs in providing social welfare services for marginalised and vulnerable communities and how they are impacted by government budget cuts, fickle donors and societal apathy.

In this Nourish & Flourish conversation, Nasiphi Zwakala, an Innovation Manager at DGMT, tells us why care is a good cornerstone of any economy. Tune in to gain a deeper understanding of how we can strengthen our social fabric, support our care economy, and champion those who are providing care services to vulnerable and marginalised people.

From a young age, Nasiphi Zwakala was drawn to both the empirical aspects of science and the humanistic principles of social justice. This led to her studies in Chemistry and a specific focus on bioanalytical methods. Upon researching pharmacokinetic studies for TB & HIV patients, she became increasingly aware of how one’s skillset can be utilised to tackle societal challenges facing her community. She then volunteered her time to assist young people in seeking employment which then led to working full-time in the development sector. This innate sense of wanting to serve has become integral to her current role at DGMT as innovation manager for grants of Compassion and Care. Addressing some of the social welfare needs for the most vulnerable of our society with sensibility whilst being mindful of systematic inputs needed in the sector for efficiency. As an avid learner, she approaches partnerships and projects with curiosity in exploring the intersection of equitable care services, research, and strategy for sustainable human development.