According to a recent South African study by RLabs and Zlto, 60% of youth said that they require support with food or finances during the lockdown. The survey results also indicate that youth have a fear that their families won’t be able to meet their financial needs during Lockdown. Through the survey, it also became known that one-third of respondents receive their household income through Government’s Social Grant Support and another third said that their household has access to a full-time income. This is a clear indication that most families do not have a full-time income, have very little or no income at all, and highlights the magnitude of the need during the pandemic. 

RLabs started the COVID-19 Relief Fund to address some of the most pressing needs that families in the community have during this vulnerable period. At the time of writing this blog, the COVID-19 Relief Fund has supported 60 Feeding Projects that served meals to 15 000 people. The COVID-19 Relief Fund has also been issuing over 1 000 Electricity Vouchers to families.  

In continuing to serve the most vulnerable, RLabs and Zlto are now aiming to extend its support to 40 000 youth and their families during Lockdown. Through the Zlto app youth will access vouchers that they can use to buy essential items in support of their extended network projected to be 200, 000 family members. “The launch of the COVID-19 Relief Fund has been boosted by donations from two of the organisation’s partners, the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation and JP Morgan, which share RLabs’ passion to support vulnerable communities. The grants will contribute to, and enable the disbursement of, the COVID-19 Relief Fund and support RLabs and Zlto on their journey to achieving their substantial target. “, says RLabs founder, Marlon Parker. Parker also says that youth can use the Zlto platform to make an active contribution to sustaining the livelihoods of their families and community during this challenging time. RLabs want youth to know that their circumstances do not determine their destiny or future. 

You can learn more about RLabs by visiting their website  https://rlabs.org/or contribute to the COVID-19 Relief Fund, which provides vulnerable families with access to food, electricity and masks using. 

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