Sport, Arts and Culture Department extends deadline for COVID-19 relief

The Department of Sport, Arts and Culture has announced an extension of the deadline for submissions for applications for the COVID-19 Relief Fund.


The scheme is meant to assist those who work in the sectors including athletes, artists, technical personnel as well as fitness instructors, to name but a few. The sectors have taken a massive financial hit as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, with a number of industries having just recently been allowed to operate under level 2, including gyms.


In a statement on Tuesday, 8 September 2020, the department said applicants had until Friday.


For the second wave, the department said it will be rolling out two processes to roll out the relief – one for athletes and all technical personnel in the sport sector, and the other for those within the arts and culture sector.


"Initially, the submission of applications for relief deadline was set for 31 August and 02 September 2020 respectively. It was then extended to 09 September 2020 to those who did not complete loading their on-line applications," the department said.


"The department is once more making that call to all prospective relief applicants to take note of the window period and urgently submit their applications for processing and also call upon those who are still to finalise the status of their applications to take advantage of the extension and urgently submit"

At least R65 million paid out in first wave


In August, Minister Nathi Mthethwa officially opened applications for the second wave of the relief funding.


So far, the department has paid out more than R65 million in the first wave.


Reflecting on the first wave, Mthetwa has said there were some challenges, including applicants not being able to fulfil the requirements of the criteria and non-compliance due to failure to submit the required documentation, such as bank statements and tax certificates.


In light of the aforementioned, the department has also called on those who are still battling with satisfying the mandatory tax requirement to urgently check their Tax Registration Status with the South African Revenue Services (Sars)


"Sars has said that all those potential applicants who are still experiencing challenges can urgently register as taypayers and will be informed of their status or their tax numbers within 24 hours," the department further said.


The second wave relief caters for the following:

  1. South Africans working in the sport, arts, culture and heritage sectors

  2. Individuals who work in the sector but do not have a regular source of income[*]Individuals who rely solely on their creative work to earn an income[*]Their earnings must have been interrupted or impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic[*]Applicants who did not benefit from the first relief

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