Three initiatives offering help, and cash, for unrest-hit small businesses


Protesters also looted businesses at Esikhaleni.

A business in Esikhaleni which was looted.

  • Various organisations have created funds to assist looted small businesses in townships to get back on their feet following July’s unrest. 
  • Initiatives such as Rebuild SA will connect entrepreneurs with volunteer mentors and assist with funding. 
  • Local mobile store weFix has partnered with Rebuild SA and has pledged to donate 10% of the value of trade-in phones they receive in the coming months.
  • Tech startup Kandua raised over R100,000 for affected businesses in just a day.  
  • For more stories go to

Various organisations have teamed up with communities, especially in townships, to help small businesses get back on their feet after vandalism and looting during the July unrest.

In parts of KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng shops remain closed and businesses shuttered, with owners and staff unsure when, if ever, they will be fully operational again.

Some, at least, will be able to call on volunteer help and even cash to rebuild.

Here are some of their options, and how you can help.

Restore SA

Restore SA is an initiative that connects entrepreneurs whose businesses were looted with volunteer mentors. It has also set up a fund to assist affected small businesses.

According to the organisation, the fund will be managed by partner non-profit Ranyaka Community Transformation. The NGO will identify businesses in need of support and oversee the disbursement of funds.

“100 percent of donations will go to the business owners,” it promises.

So far, over 100 mentors are on board to offer support to small businesses, and they are hoping for more.

The organisation has partnered with weFix, which will donate 10% of the value of trade-in phones it receives in the coming months.

“When we heard about Restore SA, we saw an opportunity to support and help rebuild those businesses that had been affected by the unrest,” says Malcolm Daitz, CEO at weFix.  

Restore SA Founder Joshua Cox encourages owners of small businesses to sign-up so they can receive the support they need from the Restore SA network.

Small business owners and mentors can sign up at

Donate to the Restore SA fund here:

See Also: Looted small businesses to benefit from R2.3 billion from treasury – must be tax compliant


Afrika Tikkun NPC is a South African charity organisation that provides education, health, and social services to underprivileged communities.

The organisation launched #RevivingTownshipEconomies, a campaign aimed at assisting rebuilding small businesses hit by the looting in Johannesburg, with other cities to follow shortly.

This includes tuck shops and others that operate informally, and have no insurance or any other capital to rebuild their businesses.   

Such businesses will be assisted with funding, other resources needed, and will also be linked with mentors.  

Afrika Tikkun NPC plans to provide between R15,000 to R100,000 as capital to an affected business, and has called for more donations from the public.   

People who are interested in lending a helping hand can do so on to access the organisation’s donation channels.

Once the campaign ends in September, funds will be allocated to affected businesses to help them rebuild.

“Most of the targeted establishments are currently not trading, meaning employees are not receiving an income. Some of the immediate needs we are tending to include food parcels and material to help them rebuild damaged infrastructure,” said CEO of Afrika Tikkun NPC Alef Meulenberg.


Kandua, a start-up that connects home service providers to the people who need them, has set up a crowdfunding page to raise funds to help repair small businesses and key community services that were affected by looting.

The company will play matchmaker by connecting various service providers to businesses and homes that need specific work done. After identifying work that is required, the funds will be used to employ local service providers such as builders and electricians to do the work.

In just a single day of its launch, the campaign raised more than R100,000 from across the country and the world. So far, the campaign has raised R141,700.

One of its partners Leroy Merlin, a large global hardware retailer, donated materials to support the rebuilding efforts.

Businesses that qualify for funding are those that meet the following criteria:

  • How critical is the business to satisfying immediate needs of a community?
  • To what extent is the business able to recover without support?

To make donations, visit Rebuild SA with Kandua.

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