This study explored the possibility of utilising saving groups in the form of stokvels as a
feasible mechanism for community driven in-situ upgrades in the South African context.
Looking from the lens of psychological empowerment the study investigated the
empowering community settings that are absent or present within the stokvel and insitu
upgrade framework that deter or enable stokvels to solve greater needs of the
An exploratory qualitative study was conducted through the use of semi-structured
interviews to obtain the insights of a sample of eight individuals representing NGOs,
CBOs and experts within the field of informal settlement upgrades, housing finance,
and savings groups, as well as eight stokvel representatives residing in Diepsloot and
Alexandra. Inductive analysis was utilised to interpret the findings of the study in
addition to unearthing emergent themes.
The study found that a cocktail of impediments exist to in-situ upgrades. Nonetheless,
stokvels were found to be a possible avenue of championing in-situ upgrades due to
the presence of members who were already psychologically empowered. A more
facilitative environment was found to be a requirement to enhance the setting
maintenance and change of the environment that facilitates stokvels to tackle more
complex problems such as self-driven upgrades of their settlements.
Mini Dissertation (MBA)--University of Pretoria, 2017.