Introduction to Mossel Bay UISP Communication & Stakeholder Engagement Structure : An Integrated Approach


Upgrading of Informal Settlement Programme (UISP) aims to improve the living conditions of people living in informal settlements by improving access to basic services (Level 1 – 3) and a choice of tenure options (Level 4 onwards).

The Department of Human Settlements’ UISP facilitates the structured upgrading of informal settlements. It applies to in situ upgrading of informal settlements as well as where communities are to be relocated for a variety of reasons. The programme entails extensive community consultation and participation, emergency basic services provision, permanent services provision and security of tenure.

The key objective of the UISP at national level is to facilitate the structured in situ upgrading of informal settlements, as opposed to relocation, to achieve the following complex and interrelated policy objectives:

Tenure Security: to enhance the concept of citizenship, incorporating both rights and obligations, by recognising and formalising the tenure rights of residents within informal settlements;

Health and Security: to promote the development of healthy and secure living environments by facilitating the provision of affordable and sustainable basic municipal engineering infrastructure to the residents of informal settlements. This must allow for scaling up in the future; and

Empowerment: to address social and economic exclusion by focusing on community empowerment and the promotion of social and economic integration, building social capital through participative processes and addressing the broader social needs of communities.

Typically, a UISP is planned and implemented in four stages (according to the National Housing Code), outlined below.

The objective of Stages 1 to 3 is to:

  • develop Enhanced Serviced Sites (ESS) with security of tenure,
  • so that all registered beneficiaries can resettle on these sites with their informal structures.
  • During Stage 3, enhanced service sites will be constructed so that each site gets a toilet and basin.
  • All the beneficiaries will be provided with security of tenure.
  • Beneficiaries who qualify for a subsidy will get transfer of the enhanced service site.
  • Beneficiaries who do not qualify for a subsidy will be granted the right to legally occupy the allocated ESS.
  • Stage 4 (which is currently not part of the Mossel Bay UISP) will focus on Housing Consolidation for qualifying beneficiaries and for those beneficiaries that can afford to build their own houses.

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