The Struggle for Informal Traders Continues in Southern Africa

ESSET Releases New Newsletter

The Ecumenical Service for Socio-Economic Transformation (ESSET) has released their newsletter featuring updates on meetings with informal traders and clergy in South Africa, a research study report on solidarity finance challenges, a consultations with informal traders in Lesotho, Swaziland, Zimbabwe, Zambia and South Africa, and a theological reflection on socio-economic transformation.  More info can be found  below:


This year marks the fourth year since the inaugural edition of the Daily Bread Digest. Bringing you every edition of the Daily Bread Digest has always been a great pleasure. It is a publication produced by the Ecumenical Service for Socio-Economic Transformation (ESSET) under the theme “Give us this day
our daily bread”. The aim of this publication is to create a space for the Church to understand and confront current socio-economic factors that generate acute poverty and inequality in our society. It isworth mentioning that this Daily Bread Digest is completely different from the previous editions.

This year we have decided to combine the Daily Bread Digest and ESSET Update. We started producing ESSET Update in 2010, employing it as an alternative strategic tool to update churches, church activists
and all social justice partners about our work and initiating conversations about critical issues affecting marginalized people in our society. Thus this newsletter has served as a mouth-piece for ESSET as well as being a platform for those in the margins of society whose voices have been silenced. Generally, our two publications were warmly received in ecumenical circles.

In the new strategic direction, ESSET is clear that it wants to journey with intent with poor communities in struggle. As part of journeying with the poor, ESSET will be analysing and documenting the struggles of community partners, sharing these struggles with churches and social justice partners to rouse them into action so that they we can all stand united in common struggles. We hope that you will continue to enjoy reading this edition and provide feedback and comments on how we can improve it further.

In this edition, you can read about Church ministers doing public witness by showing solidarity with informal traders who suffer injustices around Johannesburg. There is also an article on the findings of the completed ESSET Research Study Report on Solidarity Finance. You will recall that in the previousedition we reflected with you a bit about the journey undertaken to Brazil last year by ESSET staff, a researcher and informal traders to learn more about Solidarity Economy and Finance.

We also reflect on some of the findings of the consultations ESSET did with informal traders within the SADC countries such as Lesotho, Swaziland, Zambia, Zimbabwe and South Africa. The Consultations with informal traders which are part of ESSET’s participatory research project were aimed at reflecting on ways that would strengthen the voice and capacity of informal traders in the SADC region. We also bring you an update about the struggle for basic services in the Maila community in Limpopo. Finally, we reflect on the commission God gave to the Church and compare that with Jesus’ commission to His disciples on Matthew 10: 2-26.

Click here to download ESSET's "Daily Bread Digest, 1st Edition 2012"


The Ecumenical Service for Socio-Economic Transformation (ESSET) is an independent ecumenical organisation based in Johannesburg and working for social and economic justice. Working for socio-economic justice is understood as working for the transformation of socio-economic process, systems and structures so that the quality of life of the poor is enhanced in a sustainable manner For more information, visit ESSET's website.

Posted by Karibu - Last updated 10.08.2012