The flagship projects of the National Lotteries Commission

The National Lotteries Commission is committed to uplifting South African communities through funding causes that work for the public good.

These funds are generated through lottery regulation, which extends to participant protection, and combating illegal lotteries.

In this supplement, a few of those projects are highlighted in detail to show just how far reaching the impact of funding is. Each of these organisations and projects brings something extraordinary to the people of South Africa.

The following projects will be covered:

  • The Philani Nutrition Centre Trust in the Eastern Cape Province
  • The Bokone Community Home-Based Care and ECD in Gauteng Province
  • The Kloof Conservancy in KwaZulu-Natal
  • Vhafamadi Secondary School in Limpopo
  • Mpumalanga Province Swimming in Mpumalanga
  • The Oasis Skills Development Centre in Northern Cape
  • The Kgaratlho Project for the Blind in North West
  • The West Coast Fossil Park in Western Cape.
  • Each project has received funding from the NLC in accordance with the organisation’s strategic funding priorities. These priorities are assessed on an annual basis to increase the impact of the funding and to ensure that funds are distributed according to the NLC’s mandate and in line with the Lotteries Act 57 of 1997, as amended. The breakdown of the priority areas and the relevant information for organisations to apply for funding are outlined on the NLC’s official website (

    Organisations that qualify for funding include: non-profit organisations (NPOs), nongovernmental organisations (NGOs), section 21 companies, public benefit trusts, sporting bodies and sports clubs, educational institutions, recreational clubs and cultural bodies. The organisation welcomes applications from organisations of all sizes, particularly smaller ones and community groups.

    The NLC equitable distribution of funds by ensuring that all provinces have been allocated a minimum of 5% of the total budget. This provincial rollout has been completed in the Northern Cape, North West, Free State and Mpumalanga, and in addition 739 monitoring and evaluation site visits were conducted over the past year to assess the success of projects and investments.

    In the 2017/18 financial year, funding from the NLC created 4 845 jobs, with over 1 753 youth benefitting from employment, and about 112 800 people have been reached through the services of the funded programmes.

    The dual mandate of the NLC

    The has dual, interlinked mandate. To 1) regulate lotteries and sports pools, and to 2) collect revenue and fund good causes. The mandate is outlined in detail on the organisation’s website for members of the public to access.

    Established as the National Lotteries Board (NLB) in terms of the Lotteries Act (No 57 of 1997), the organisation began operations in 1999. In 2015, after the proclamation of the Lotteries Amendment Act (No 32 of 2013), the NLB was re-launched as a Commission (NLC), with provisions in the Act that geared it to serve South Africa with increased relevance.

    A small amount from every Lottery ticket sold goes into the National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund (NLDTF).

    Members of the Board of the NLC are trustees of the NLDTF. It is their job to safeguard this money, invest it wisely, and ensure that it is put to the best possible use to benefit good causes.

    The decisions around distribution of funds are made by three committees, known as Distributing Agencies, which are appointed by the Minister of Trade and Industry to award grants from the NLDTF. They are appointed for their expertise in the fields for which grants are allocated:

  • Charities, which includes a vast range of welfare and social development interventions.
  • Arts, Culture and National Heritage, including Environment.
  • Sport and Recreation.
  • The NLC also makes occasional Miscellaneous Purposes grants for projects that might fall outside any of the above fields but meet requirements set by the Minister of Trade and Industry.

    The Board and the Distributing Agencies are supported by the full-time staff of the NLC at offices nationwide.

    Turnaround times on applications

    The 2015 regulations that came with the amendment of the Lotteries Act also prescribe that turnaround time on applications must be 150 days from the submission of applications to the communication of the outcome of adjudication.

    The presence of offices in every province, enhanced processes, Distributing Agencies appointed on a full time basis, and an open call system where applications are accepted at any time have all contributed to the NLC meeting this target.

    Healthy mothers for healthy children with Philani and the National Lotteries Commission

    The Philani Maternal, Child Health and Nutrition Trust promotes family health, focusing particularly on supporting pregnant mothers and preventing child malnutrition. After applying for a grant, Philani funded with R5-million to help upgrade existing infrastructure and invest in new infrastructure.

    Established in 1979, the Trust has solid experience around issues of maternal health, child health and nutrition. Its mandate is to enhance sustainable community health and it has developed programmes to uphold this vision in the communities it serves. This is further enhanced by a commitment to preventing child malnutrition and rehabilitating underweight children.

    The scourge of HIV/Aids continues in South Africa, and the work done Philani incorporates programmes to prevent the spread of the virus.

    The Mentor Mother programme is built around the concept of using capable women to help change the lives of families in their communities. Working with the Department of Health, the Philani Mentor Mother programme has teams in both the Western and Eastern Cape that focus on bringing primary healthcare interventions into the homes of families. Mentor mothers help mothers to rehabilitate their underweight children, give support to those who are pregnant and assist in the prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmission.

    The impact is far-reaching More than 192 396 households have been visited by the mentor mothers since 2014; 248 children are enrolled in the Educare classes; and 50 women benefit from skills development through the income generation programme.

    The Educare programme consists of classes at the various nutrition centres that engage children in stimulating learn and play activities. As Philani embarked on its Income Generation Programme, the organisation realised that there was a need for a venue where the preschool children could play and learn in a safe space. Children in the programme are now cared for by mothers on a rotational basis.

    These two programmes, along with many others initiated by the Philani Maternal, Child Health and Nutrition Trust address very real issues facing regular South Africans.

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