The Minister of Sport, Arts and Culture launches the 3rd Phase of the Covid-19 Relief Fund as a step towards sector stabilisation

5 February 2021

Due to the growing concern on the rising number of COVID-19 infections; Cabinet took a decision to move the country back to COVID-19 Alert Level 3, as announced by the President on the 28th of December 2020.  This announcement saw the Sport, Arts and Culture sector suffer yet another financial set-back as Government had to put in place tighter restrictions aimed at curbing the spread of the virus and saving lives of South Africans.  The sector normally generates more job opportunities for practitioners during the festive period than any other season.      
As an intervention to aid the plight of artists affected by this pandemic that is taking lives and livelihoods, compromising the dignity of practitioners and preventing them from fully living out their passion within the arts, Minister Nathi Mthethwa launched the 3rd phase of the COVID-19 Relief Funding today. The implementation of this relief funding takes  cognisance of the identified challenges of the first and second phases. Broader consultations with the sector were undertaken in preparation for the Third Phase of Covid -19 Relief Funding.  


To date, the Department has implemented the first and second phases of the COVID-19 Relief Funding. Nearly 5, 000 practitioners were recommended for the first phase and over R80 Million was paid out to the sector. In the second phase and as of the 14th of December 2020, over R2 Million was paid out to practitioners in the sector. 3,658 practitioners benefitted from the Solidarity Fund with a total of nearly R3 Million that was paid out. Through DSAC’s partnership with the Department of Small Business Development (DBSA), over R5 Million was paid out to practitioners within the sector, with a further estimated R 13 Million to be disbursed by the end of March 2021.

In spite of our best efforts, the Department is fully cognisant of the fact that there are many others who did not benefit from these programmes, given the Department’s finite budget. With that said, we have and will continue to engage national organisations in line with our open door policy.

The Department, alongside the appointed service provider, is also developing the rollout of an implementation plan to provide an Artist Wellness Programme to the sector to deal with the emotional and psychological impact of their challenges and will also provide other enhancement interventions such as personal or business financial management, legal support and lifestyle management.

Here are the Basic guidelines:

  • Applicants should send only ONE application; and not multiple applications.
  • Provide honest and accurate information and note that misrepresentation of information may lead to your application not being considered.
  • It is compulsory to complete all relevant sections of the application form.
  • Ensure that all the required supporting documents are included in your application. If you do not provide all the information required by the DSAC, your application will not be successful.
  • State where information is not applicable to your application, by writing “N/A” in the appropriate section on the application form.
  • In addition to the application and supporting documents, the DSAC may require further information from you. You will be contacted if further information is required.
  • If your application is received on or before the closing date, an acknowledgement will be sent.
  • Late applications will NOT be considered.
  • You will be sent notification to inform you of the outcome of the DSAC decision if your application is successful.
  • Amount of funding will be dependent on total available budget; and content of your application, that latter part is applicable to organisations who will be submitting proposals.
  • Provide a certified copy of a South African identity document/ Smart Card, which should not be older than three months. 
  • Provide bank account details to enable the department to process your payment, if you are successful
  • Provide proof of tax registration If not registered for tax, follow this link to register visit SARS has indicated that the turnaround time for those who will be applying for registration or seeking proof of registration will be 24hrs.

  • Provide confirmation that applicant is a Sport, Arts, Culture and Heritage practitioner/ organisation You can provide any of the following; Portfolio/Profile/Biography of the applicant specifying relevant experience in   the arts; OR  Brief description of what your job entailed in your last employment/contract;  OR Letter of reference from reputable  arts organisations/ Unions/ Record Company/ Fellow Artists/ Management/ Agent /or community leaders.


Creatives, event organisers, athletes, coaches, technical personnel and other practitioners who do not solely rely on the income earned from participating in creative, cultural and/or sport events are excluded from applying for the 3rd phase of relief funding.

Group applications (choirs, bands, etc.), these practitioners are encouraged to apply individually.

This third phase of funding is aimed at providing relief  to sectors within the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture; amidst the resurgence of 2nd Wave COVID-19 pandemic in the country; and the implementation of stringent health and safety protocols and compliances. This funding covers individuals and organisations in the sport and creative industries according to the different categories that make up this funding.


Applicable to Arts, Culture and Heritage across the ecosystem and Sport including all aspects thereof; except those covered under exclusions in section B, above.

  • Applicants who applied to National DSAC Relief fund, relief fund by DSAC Entities and Provincial DSAC departments and were granted funding, are also allowed to apply during this funding round. 
  • Applicants must be South Africans, 18 years of age and older, practicing in their sport or creative industries discipline for the last 12 months.
  • The Department may, based on the number of successful applications determine amounts that may be disbursed in each category.
  • Each successful applicant who comply fully with all requirements may receive an amount of not less than R10 000.00 (ten thousand rand) once off, subject to availability of funds and as per paragraph above.
  • The applicants consent that the Department may use his and/or her name as reference in its awareness and promotional campaigns for the purpose of COVID 19 only.



  • Applications from registered sport, recreation, arts and culture organisations such as Arts Centres, Arts Training Institutions, Heritage Organisations, Arts and Culture Associations, Independent Theatres and Independent Museums and Galleries, Sport Federations, Sport Associations, Recreation Organisations, Sport NGOs and any other sport, arts and culture organisations. 
  • Community Arts Centre that are viable; and can provide/ create work opportunities for artists
  • Organisation must also be able to demonstrate how the proposal will bring sustainability to the sport, arts and culture in the country
  • Applications and/or proposals that will contribute to job opportunities particularly targeting rural communities and target groups (youth, women and people with disability)
  • Applications and/or proposals targeting marginalised art forms e,g heritage related projects, folk, diphala, sicathamiya and other indigenous arts and culture art forms
  • Applications and/or proposals targeting marginalised communities e,g, Khoi San community
  • Online proposals focusing on education and capacity building in the sector


The department has introduced measures to ensure enhancement of access for all potential applicants; by engaging with Community Art Centres, Public Libraries and Love Life Centres. These will be used as platforms for assisting practitioners with online and manual applications.  All information about these centres will be available on the department’s website and through various media platforms that the department’s Communication and Marketing will be using. Also there is a Call centre that has been set-up to deal with inquiries. Communication between applicants will be conducted through emails, SMSs or WhatsApp, depending on your preferred mode of communication, which you will indicate on the application form.    
Media Enquiries:
Masechaba Khumalo: Spokesperson (Minister)
Phone: 082 858 4415