SA Hardship Fund Announced

Tshikululu Social Investments to administer the R8 million Netflix donation to help support the hardest hit below-the-line workers whose productions were suspended due to the pandemic

Today, the South African Screen Federation (SASFED), supported by the Independent Producers Organisation (IPO), announced the establishment of a COVID-19 Film and Television Relief Fund in collaboration with Netflix to provide emergency relief to the hardest-hit workers in South Africa’s creative community.

Netflix will donate over ZAR 8, 3 million, which will be administered by Tshikululu Social Investment, who will screen the applications for eligibility as well as disburse the funds to beneficiaries.

The Covid-19 pandemic has devastated creative communities all around the world, including South Africa, with many film and TV productions experiencing disruptions that have left thousands of workers without income. Netflix, in collaboration with SASFED and the IPO, will provide a one-time emergency relief grant to below the line workers such as electricians, carpenters, hair and makeup artists, drivers, costume designers and many other freelancers who are paid hourly wages and work on a project-to-project basis. The workers will be eligible to apply for the R15 000 one-time benefit.

Starting from August 3, 2020 the members of South Africa’s creative community will be able to apply by filling out an online application at Tshikululu’s website ( or mailing physical applications. The eligibility criteria will be posted on Tshikululu’s website on 3 August 2020 when applications open.

Unathi Malunga, SASFED Executive Director: “SASFED is delighted about the announcement that the COVID-19 Film and Television Relief Fund will provide relief for workers in the film and TV sector who are not eligible for other available relief funds. The S.A. economy has been hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Netflix fund supporting the local film industry brings hope to struggling industry professionals. We hope other potential partners will follow Netflix’s example and support SASFED’s broader initiatives which offer assistance to industry professionals across the whole value chain – an initiative undertaken by industry, for the industry. SASFED applauds Netflix’s support of the local industry during the global crisis.”

Sisanda Henna, IPO co-Chairperson: “Following months of extreme hardship for most of our sector, the IPO is overjoyed that Netflix is providing this desperately-needed relief for those most hard hit by the pandemic – the industry’s below-the-line freelancers to whom no other relief has been available. This is a clear demonstration of Netflix’s commitment to the sustainability of the South African film and TV production industry, and we welcome them – with wide open arms – as a partner in our broader efforts to support the screen sector.”

Dorothy Ghettuba, Netflix’s lead for African Originals: “We’re proud to be working with The South African Screen Federation and the Independent Producers Organisation to support the hardest hit workers in TV and film production. South African crews are vital to Netflix’s success and we want to help those freelancers who most need support in these unprecedented times.”

In March, Netflix announced a $100M hardship fund to help the hardest-hit workers in the creative community across the world affected by the pandemic, which has since been increased to $150M. The ZAR 8, 3 million contribution in South Africa is part of this initiative.


Known as “The leading voice and champion of the South African Screen Industry,” the South African Screen Federation (SASFED) is the national federation of independent film, television and audio-visual industry organisations in South Africa. SASFED is proudly representative of the collective core of South Africa’s independent screen industry and is driven and rooted in an appreciation of the specific interests, concerns and programmes of each of its members, with current full member organisations: Documentary Filmmakers’ Association (DFA), Independent Producers’ Organisation (IPO), Personal Managers’ Association (PMA), Animation South Africa (A.S.A), South African Guild of Actors (SAGA), Sisters Working in Film and Television (SWIFT), South African Guild of Editors (SAGE) and Writers’ Guild of South Africa (WGSA).

About the IPO:

The Independent Producers Organisation (IPO) is a representative, national organisation of independent South African film, television and video producers, and is constituted to represent, protect and promote the interests and needs of producers. The IPO currently represents the interests of over eighty percent of working producers in South Africa. The IPO strives towards creating an empowered and representative film and television industry in South Africa that ensures the advancement of a sustainable and stable environment for producers.

About Tshikululu:

Established in 1998, Tshikululu is a Level 3 B-BBEE contributor with more than 22 years’ experience in the social investment space. Our purpose is to catalyse social change. We provide agile, end-to-end strategic social investment solutions, informed by our real world experience and our deep understanding of South Africa’s social landscape. We deliver through hands-on engagement with our programme partners, clients and other stakeholders. As custodians of some of the country’s largest social investment programmes, non-negotiable adherence to strict corporate governance best practices is paramount to how we operate.

We are the most concentrated group of social investment experts in South Africa, with more than 60 highly-experienced and dynamic social investment professionals. Social investment is serious business. Bringing about real, lasting change requires high-level skills, thinking and drive. In order to achieve our goals, we will always apply our minds, learn continuously, push our limits, form powerful partnerships and never compromise on quality. We aim, very simply, to be the best social investors in the world.

About Netflix:

Netflix is the world’s leading streaming entertainment service with 193 million paid memberships in over 190 countries enjoying TV series, documentaries and feature films across a wide variety of genres and languages. Members can watch as much as they want, anytime, anywhere, on any internet-connected screen. Members can play, pause and resume watching, all without commercials or commitments.