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AIDC’s constituency

AIDC works with organisations and movements in the labour, faith-based, community and environmental justice sectors, principally in South Africa but with activities that reach across the southern Africa region – well over 100,000 people in total. In the coming period we envisage increasing work with a growing number of formations throughout southern Africa, especially Swaziland, Mozambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe, the DRC and Mauritius.

In implementing the activities described in this plan, AIDC will work with organisations, movements and structures at three levels: locally, nationally and regionally.

In South Africa, and arising from our past movement support work and the “One Million Climate Jobs” campaign, AIDC has developed strategic partnerships with several organisations and movements that have been intimately involved in developing and implementing AIDC programmes and have helped to formulate the current strategic plan. These include the Southern African Green Revolutionary Council (a leading affiliate of Mining Affected Communities United in Action – MACUA); the Foundation for Socio-Economic Justice (FSEJ) (Swaziland); the Centre for Alternative Research and Studies (CARES) (Mauritius); the Amadiba Crisis Committee; Botshabelo Unemployed Movement (BUM); Unemployed People’s Movement (UPM) Grahamstown; the Progressive Youth Movement (PYM) Western Cape; and the Amandla! Forum PE (Port Elizabeth).

AIDC and our strategic partners have made a commitment to work closely in promoting a just transition to a low-carbon, wage-led, sustainable and equitable economy, and through that process to explore options for transforming AIDC into a membership-based organisation.

In relation to extractives and mining, AIDC will work closely with several organisations campaigning under the banner of “Mining Affected Communities United in Action” (MACUA), including especially the Southern African Green Revolutionary Council (SAGRC), Vaal Environmental Justice Alliance, Ekhuruleni Environmental Organisation, BUA (Northwest Province), and the Amadiba Crisis Committee. WAMUA (Women from Mining Affected Communities United in Action) groups together women from mining affected communities and will be an important constituency of AIDC especially in relation to strengthening women’s leadership.

In helping to facilitate broad alliances, AIDC will engage various faith-based formations that are crucial in reaching grassroots communities and that have been active around issues of social, economic and environmental justice. These include SACC, Southern African Faith Communities’ Environmental Institute (SAFCEI), Southern African Catholic Bishops Conference Justice and Peace, Economic Justice Network, Muslim Judicial Council, and the Interfaith Alliance.

At the level of the struggle for decent work and a living wage, AIDC has built up partnerships with several movements organising the unemployed, including the Botshabelo Unemployed Movement (BUM); Unemployed People’s Movement (UPM) Grahamstown; the Progressive Youth Movement (PYM) Western Cape; and the Amandla! Forum PE. These relatively new formations are characterised by women who are active at the grassroots level but are not yet strongly represented among the leadership. AIDC will be working with these formations, especially through our capacity enhancement programmes to strengthen their leadership role in their organisation and in the broader movement.

In addition, through its research services and popular education programmes AIDC has formed strong relationships with several important trade unions, especially the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA), the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU), South African Chemical Workers’ Union (SACWU), the independent farmworkers’ union in the Western Cape (CSAAWU), Food and Allied Workers’ Union (FAWU), South African Clothing and Textile Workers’ Union (SACTWU) and South African Commercial and Catering Workers’ Union (SACCAWU).

In respect of public sector workers union, AIDC has worked very closely with teachers and health workers as well as municipal workers in advancing the One Million Climate Jobs campaign, most of whom are affiliated to the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU). We are aware that many of these unions are facing serious tensions and divisions and we anticipate the emergence of new public sector unions that AIDC would want to support in their efforts to link their struggles for a living wage with a broader struggle against the dominant neoliberal development path.

In respect of environmental justice struggles and campaigns, especially linked to resisting the expansion of carbon-intensive energy systems, AIDC works closely with groundWork, Earthlife Africa, Greenpeace, WWF, Centre for Civil Society, South Durban Community Environmental Alliance, NUMSA, Vaal Environmental Justice Alliance, and other MACUA affiliates.