National Upgrading Support Programme (NUSP) – Project Completed

National Upgrading Support Programme (NUSP)

NUSP is a new government initiative aimed at in-situ informal settlement upgrading. The National Upgrading Support Programme (NUSP) was designed to support the National Department of Human Settlements (NDHS) in its implementation of the Upgrading Informal Settlements Programme (UISP) with the objective of eventually upgrading all informal settlements in South Africa. The key objective of NUSP is capacity building of municipalities to overcome the challenges of slow delivery of subsidised houses through incremental upgrading of informal settlements.

Between October 2013 and May 2014, PEP partnered with Development Action Group (DAG) in its National Upgrading Support Programme (NUSP) contract with Department of Human Settlements to provide socio technical assitance in 25 informal settlements around Cape Town. PEP’s team led the facilation process in 14 informal settlements in Philippi East. These are Thabo Mbeki East & West, Marcus Garvey, Phola Park, Never-Never and 10 settlements in Sheffield Road and surrounds. There are 6280 households in total in these settlements. See household numbers for each settlement in the following table.


No Informal Settlement Number of Households Profile Type
1 Thabo Mbeki East & West 1418 Advanced
4 Marcus Garvey 510 Advanced
2 Phola Park 996 Advanced
3 Never-Never 704 Advanced
5 Sheffield Road 1200 Area wide
6 Kan Site 120 Area wide
7 Graveyard Pond 430 Area wide
8 Graveyard Precinct 120 Area wide
9 Nglube 245 Area wide
10 Baghdad 240 Area wide
11 School Site 21 Area wide
12 Soweto 111 Area wide
13 Ezihagwini 100 Area wide
14 Xhutinja 65 Area wide
  Total 6280  

Number of households in each informal settlement in philippi


The aim of the project was to provide socio technical assistance, to enhance the capacity of CoCT officials and communities to develop robust informal settlement upgrading plans through a participatory planning processes. In addition, the project aimed to strengthen the capacity of City of Cape Town officials to deliver informal settlement upgrading in a coordinated and programmatic manner through the City’s Pilot Upgrade Consolidation Programme.

The entire process was a phased approach involving gathering baseline information, assessing institutional setup at community and City level, one-on-one engagement with community leaders and ward councillors, workshops and co-production of settlement maps and profiles with community and the City. The core focus of this process was building bridges  between communities in informal settlements and the City of Cape Town (CoCT).

The final outcome in the form of settlment profiles also included Priority Action plans for each informal settlement based on the goals identified by the communities. Some examples include:

  • Improve working relationship with the City by establishing a Working Group in each settlement to enable open lines of communication; and the preparation of an MOU outlining roles and responsibilities, outputs and timeframes.
  • Establish and strengthen appropriate committees i.e. infrastructure, disaster, waste management, security, education to support the management and interim development of the settlement.
  • Fire and flooding mitigating strategies at household and settlement level.
  • To carry out household surveys and enumerations to ascertain the current number of households and determine the number of taps and toilets needed to meet minimum standards.
  • Ensure regular repairs and maintenance of communal toilets, water standpipes, other infrastructure and the collection of solid waste and area cleaning.
  • Improve accessibility, mobility and internal drainage of roads and pathways.
  • Improve the critical lack of social facilities such as as community meeting areas, pre-schools and primary school. Additionally, integrate social facilities with the surrounding area.
  • Improve and integrate existing economic facilities and livelihood activities in the settlement and surrounding areas.  Provide support for small businesses within each settlement to benefit from various LED strategy programmes for small emerging businesses.

Full reports/action plans for each settlement are available in the further reading section below.