by Ramona Baijnath, University of Johannesburg
This paper conducts an African Feminist exploration into the life herstory narrative of one woman beneficiary in South Africa’s Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) at Leratong Hospital in Kagiso situated in Gauteng province. In South Africa, poverty has a face, she is young, black African and poorly educated but we are reliably informed that her access to the EPWP and other government programmes is steadily increasing. Once you move past the demographics, little is known about this woman, she is encrypted under a veil of invisibility, her identities, her relationships, her gendered negotiations of daily life and her agency or ability or inability to grasp opportunities and influence her life course is gapingly absent from the noisy discourse – the narrative is aborted. This paper begins to fill the lacuna in the literature through the chronicling of the life herstory scenes that have led the participant to join this EPWP intervention within the infrastructure sector.