How to apply for Unemployment Social Grant – covid-19

How to apply for Unemployment Social Grant

Social distress relief (SRD) grants

How to apply for Unemployment Social Grant for the COVID-19 Social Distress Relief Special Grant are electronic only. If you need help applying, SASSA staff and designated volunteers can help.

The special amount of COVID-19 for the relief of social distress is 350 rand per month, as of the date of its approval. Applicants will be paid from the month in which they apply; there will be no accumulation.

Applicants must be:

South African citizens, permanent residents or refugees registered in Internal Affairs;
Resident within the borders of the Republic of South Africa;
Older than 18 years-old;
Not receive income;
Not receive any social subsidy;
Not receiving any unemployment insurance benefits and not qualifying for unemployment insurance benefits;
Not receiving an allocation from the national student financial aid plan;
Receive no other government support for the COVID-19 response; and
You do not reside in a government funded or subsidized institution.

Also Read: Youths SA-Application For A Free Driving Licence

What information is required:

ID number;
Name and first name as entered in identification (and initials);
Gender and disability;
Bank details: bank name and account number;
Contact details: mobile phone number;
Proof of residential address;
SASSA does not require any applicant to scan supporting documents such as identification, proof of address or bank statements.

By submitting an application, applicants authorize SASSA to validate financial and other information with data sources held by government and financial institutions, including banks and SA Revenue Services.

Providing false information to qualify for the grant is a crime and will lead to legal proceedings.

How to Apply:

WhatsApp: 0820468553 and select SASSA
USSD: * 127 * 7737 #
Email: (link send email)
IVR call center: 0800 60 10 11

Applicants can:

switch from one payment method to another
choose to receive the scholarship at the post office in a bank account of your choice or vice versa

Change your payment preferences by visiting
move your payments from one bank to another
choose an option to send cash using a mobile phone registered only in your name
The above options will only be open from August 3-9.

Check the status of your application


Additional measures

Recipients of the child support subsidy will receive an additional R300 in May and from June to October they will receive an additional R500 each month.
All other grant recipients will receive an additional R250 per month for the next six months.
In addition, a special Covid-19 grant for emergency social assistance of R 350 per month will be paid for the next 6 months to people who are currently unemployed and who do not receive any other form of social grant or payment from the FIU. (The Department of Social Development will issue the necessary requirements to access and request this financing).
South Africa’s Social Security Agency SASSA will implement a technology-based solution to augment food aid through vouchers and cash transfers to ensure that aid reaches those in need.
In addition, the Ministry of Social Development has partnered with the Solidarity Fund, NGOs, and community organizations to distribute 250,000 food packages across the country over the next two weeks.

Grant payment

Social subsidy payments through ATMs and points of sale.

The Banking Association of South Africa (BASA) has confirmed that banks are ready for the payment cycle. ATMs will be replenished in time for the payment cycle that begins March 30.

Banks will also broadcast messages reminding customers of the priority given to the elderly and people with disabilities.

The points of sale have confirmed their availability. The high volume store list has just been received and will be shared with NATJOC to assist SANDF and SAPS with support planning. Retailers have confirmed their own containment measures:

Also Check: Application for R350 unemployment grant South Africans-Covid-19

Social benefit payments at cash payment points

SASSA will deploy at least one manager at each point of payment to help manage queues and respond to inquiries; staff will have protective equipment.

Social assistance for food packages in emergency situations

SASSA will provide Social Problems Assistance (SRD) in the form of food packages as a temporary provision of assistance to people who need it so urgently that they cannot meet their most basic needs or those of their families. SRD is paid to South African citizens, permanent residents or refugees who do not have sufficient means. Here are the criteria for those who can qualify:

Those receiving temporary disability benefits that expired in March 2020;
Those who have had disasters in their communities such as floods and fires within the meaning of the Disaster Management Act of 1978;
If a family breadwinner has died and the request is made within 12 months from the date of death;
If everyone in a household is unemployed and needs help from the government in the form of food packages;
Child-headed household;
If you are unable to work for a medical reason for a period of six months

Regarding the application process, an application for social distress relief or a social grant may be submitted electronically, in addition to any other means available to make such applications. Applicable actions include sending a WhatsApp message to 0600 123 456 and selecting SASSA or sending an email to (link sends email).

Find out how to get the help you need, visit

Call center

SASSA call center 0800 60 10 11
Call center available only during business hours
Link to the Postbank call center for inquiries about SASSA / SAPO cards.

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