SAWID adopts psycho-social models that attempt to reduce dependency on others for sustenance and livelihoods, overcome feelings of shock, fear and helplessness, focus on options, implications and potential outcomes and seek to address immediate individual needs. To achieve this, SAWID’s intervention applies direct human interventions by training key individuals in psycho-social approaches and assigning them to individual families to facilitate the household intervention, thus strengthening the resilience, thinking and problem-solving skills that the families need to survive and graduate from poverty.

Psycho-social interventions strengthen the capacity of individuals and communities to cope with stresses, particularly those associated with poverty, conflict and violence. It addresses people’s well-being by focusing on their sense of value for self and others. Women and girls find an opportunity and space to break the silence about isolation and personal internal conflicts, are able to express themselves, finding a sense of solidarity with other women and learning new skills. SAWID integrates this awareness through mainstreaming a psycho-social approach and applying it to how its programmes are designed, implemented, monitored and evaluated. 

Transforming youth community members into resource persons for communicating and counselling on poverty and development within community members is often a complex task.

Capacities of the SAWs are built through a combination of structured; formal in-class training sessions and on-the-job support by the supervisors and program managers. The completion and graduation follows a process of a series of assessments, verification and evaluations by the Health and Welfare SETA and Quality Assurance Authority. As a legal requirement, the Social Auxiliary workers who wish to practice the profession have to register with the South African Council of Social Work (SACSS) and for them to remain registered they must participate in Continuing Professional Development (CPD).

The aim of the CPD is:

  • Building knowledge and skills
  • Keeping practitioners abreast of developments in their field 
  • Promoting confidence in practitioners’ abilities to provide a high standard of services 
  • Maintaining professional standards; and
  • Promoting excellence