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Pilot Project with KwaZulu Natal Prosecuting Authority

BACKGROUND

The South African Public Service transformation process has in general been difficult and plagued by problems which have included a scarcity of funds, poor internal and departmental co-ordination and communication and a skills deficit. In addition government departments have struggled with the challenges of transforming institutions geared towards enforcing apartheid into ones which serve the needs of the broader population.

The Criminal Justice Sector encompasses several departments which have had first hand experience of these post apartheid transformation difficulties many of which have contributed to the high levels of stress, dissatisfaction and de-motivation among staff. This, coupled with high crime rates and severe resource shortages, has contributed to what can only be described as a service delivery crisis within the sector.

It is within the above context that the Independent Projects Trust (IPT) in 1999 formed a partnership with the KwaZulu Natal Prosecuting Authority in order to develop and test an intervention designed to improve institutional culture and support the delivery of justice within KwaZulu Natal.

PROGRAMME

The initial pilot programme which was run over a two year period consisted of three distinct phases.

The first phase was an initial needs assessment and baseline study conducted in the Pietermaritzburg High Court and the Durban and Pietermaritzburg Magistrates Courts. This process enabled the development of appropriate interventions, relevant training materials and the collection of baseline data against which to measure the impact of the programme.

The second phase consisted of specific interventions based on the information collected during the needs assessment. These interventions included, amongst others, skills building workshops, team building initiatives, management development and strategic planning exercises.

The third phase was the evaluation of the programme in order to measure it's success and to determine the potential of a "roll-out" process to other courts within the criminal justice system.

This project was followed by a needs assessment within the entire Criminal Justice Sector in order to determine whether a large scale provinicial intervention could contribute to improved co ordination and delivery. A further 5 year project is currently underway based on the findings of this feasibility study, entitled the Criminal Justice Strengthening Project

For further information about this project please contact Iole


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