The Thusong Service Centre programme of government was initiated in 1999 to extend services of government, in an integrated manner, closer to outlying areas where people live. Primarily, the focus was on rural and underserviced communities, with the aim of addressing the historical factors limiting citizens to access government services and information.
The first generation targeted one Thusong Service Centre in each district by December 2004. Sixty-five centres were established by December 2004 (and subsequently a further 21 have been set up, bringing the total to 87 by March 2007) with more than 700 services provided in areas that were not previously serviced.
Thusong Service Centres are one-stop, integrated community development centres, with community participation and services relevant to people’s needs. They aim to empower the poor and disadvantaged through access to information, services and resources from government, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), parastatals, business, etc. enabling them to engage in government programmes for the improvement of their lives.Government’s vision for Thusong Service Centres is to provide every South African citizen with access to information and services within their place of residence and in each local municipality by 2014 with the purpose of improving the quality of their lives through integrate service delivery.
By the end of March 2012, 171 Thusong Service Centres were in operation, making a crucial contribution to the expansion of infrastructure for access to information and services that citizens can use. Typical services found in these centres include those from the departments of Home Affairs, Labour, South African Social Security Agency (SASSA), Social Development, GCIS, and the department of Health as well as tele-centres, the Post Office, libraries, agricultural extension offices and municipal services. Community Development Workers, the South African Police Service, NGOs and community-based organisations, also offer services through the centres.
As the Mossel Bay Thusong Service Centre, we strive to ensure that most needed services are in place by year 2019/2020 as approved by Mossel Bay Council.