LEAP (Leading Enterprise Assistance Programme)

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LEAP (Leading Enterprise Assistance Programme)

Leap is a public, non-profit organisation, established as a voluntary association, with the name: The association for a learning approach to promoting tenure security for the poor and vulnerable in South Africa, known as Leap.

South AfricaLeap started in 1999 as the Legal Entity Assessment Project (LEAP) a collaborative effort based in KwaZulu-Natal. It was a response to growing concerns in the land sector around the apparent dysfunctionality of the common property institutions (CPI’s) that were established under land reform programmes. These CPI’s, most commonly Trusts and Communal Property Associations (CPA’s), were being established to take over title of tracts of land on behalf of groups of people who were beneficiaries of the Land Reform programmes.

The initial objective of the project was to develop a better understanding of the nature of the problems CPA’s and Trusts were facing and what affected their ability to function effectively. LEAP developed a conceptual framework in order to assess the institutions, analyse of their problems and develop solutions. This framework assumes that the key purpose of CPI’s is to secure tenure for the group and individuals and that secure tenure is about: Defendable rights and enforceable duties to property and benefits flowing from it; Rules, procedures and systems for managing these property rights and duties.

This framework allowed LEAP to map the components of common property tenure, and to identify some key problems, and ot propose ways to address these. LEAP also developed indicators to assess the tenure security in common property situations, and carried out a number of assessments with communities in KwaZulu Natal.

As the Leap evolved from a specific focus on CPI’s to a clearer focus on tenure security and land administration, discussions with colleagues led to the recognition that there are common problems and the potential for fruitful work. People working in the land and housing sectors, in urban as well as rural situations, were experiencing serious problems with the forms of tenure on offer through the various government programmes. Inter-sectoral collaboration across the urban-rural divide led to the establishment of Leap as a Voluntary Association, working with a national focus, with the support of the Legal Resources Centre. Leap currently has partnerships with NGO on a number of action research Case Studies , which are our current case studies.

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