Date: 16th February 2023

Informal Economy Development Forum chairman addresses the National Empowerment Fund with the ECD sector issues and sources a solution.

Over the past two years, the South African Early Childhood Development (ECD) sector has undergone major transformation, which has been theoretically beneficial in policy plans, however implementation thereof has been aghast. The move from Department of Social Development (DSD) to the Department of Basic Education (DBE), is at the centre of these challenges faced. It is to this backdrop that the Chairman of the IEDF, David Venter, met with the National Empowerment Fund’s (NEF) Regional Manager Bongumusa Biyele to discuss the impact of this move by ECDs from DSD to DBE.

ECD’s within the informal space are women led small businesses and create employment while offering child-care and educational services to the community. The collaboration between the IEDF-ECD sector, through its ECD Chamber, and the NEF marks a significant move intact
by both parties in recognizing this sector as businesses – thus qualifying the sector for much needed business funding. Mr. Venter’s discussion with the NEF further focused on next steps to be taken by the IEDF ECD’ chamber; which Mr Biyele concurs would be evaluated according to the following expansion of current businesses criteria, viz:

  • Grading improvement as per new ECD spatial policy[i].         
  • 51% of the ECD business must be black owned.
  • A further 40% of these businesses must be black women owned.
  • Personal interest and involvement of fund applicant must be evident in the ECD they are applying funds for.
  • The revenue generated from the ECD should be sufficient to service the NEF fund loan.

Mr. Biyele concluded that the NEF is offering these services to all South Africans within the above sector and with the IEDF are calling on all interested parties to apply for this funding.

Want to know more about the IEDF ECD Chamber and how to apply for NEF funds?

Visit our website or get in contact with us on 087 094 3501 or WhatsApp 074 552 2891 or email

Are you an IEDF member? If not join now and become part of the movement, or call us on 087 094 3501 or WhatsApp 074 552 2891 or email


Keziah Zachariah


Executive Assistant to the Chairman of the IEDF