Tuesday | 12 May | 2020
The South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) applications for the R350 special Covid-19 Social Relief of Distress Grant for unemployed people are now open.
Here is everything you need to know regarding the process:
Applicants must be:
– above the age of 18;
– not receiving any income;
– not receiving any social grant;
– not receiving any unemployment insurance benefit and does not qualify to receive unemployment insurance benefits;
– not receiving a stipend from the National Student Financial Aid Scheme; and
– not a resident in a government funded or subsidised institution.
Prospective applicants will need to provide the following compulsory information for processing of their applications:
– Identity Number;
– Name and Surname as captured in the ID (and initials);
– Gender and Disability;
– Banking details – Bank name and account number;
– Contact details – Cell phone number;
– Proof of residential address;
When does it start paying out and for how long is it valid?
The first R350 special Covid-19 Social Relief of Distress (SRD) grants are due to be paid out on 15 May.
The grants, due to run for six months, and so due worth R2 100 each in total, are available to all South Africans over 18 who do not have any other form of income, and do not receive any other form of government support.
Ways to apply:
- WhatsApp message to 082 046 8553 (no longer the Department of Health WhatsApp line on 060 012 3456, on which initial tests were conducted)
- Email to SRD@sassa.gov.za, which automatically sends back a form to fill in
- A USSD code, by dialling *134*7737# from a cell phone
Sassa is due to have a special section on its website, at https://www.sassa.gov.za/Pages/COVID-19_SRD_Grant.aspx
If an application is rejected, it may be due to a recently changed cell phone number.
Fraud checking mechanisms for the payment system include matching the cell phone number provided by an applicant against other government databases.
If an applicant has previously provided one cell phone number to an institution such as the SA Revenue Service or the Unemployment Insurance Fund, and now tries to apply using a different number, the system will kick you out.
You do not need to provide proof of address, but you must provide an address.
How is it paid out?
Recipients without bank accounts will have a choice of banks from which to get cash via an ATM.
For those without bank accounts, money will be distributed via the cash-sending functions of the major banks.
Those systems, such as eWallet for First National Bank and CashSend for Absa, require only details sent to a cell phone number to withdraw money, with no card or other identity verification required.
There are no store vouchers, for now.
Other government subsidies
* All information was correct at the time of publication.