Communicare is an independent social enterprise that manages a growing residential portfolio in the affordable and social housing markets along with a small commercial portfolio. We own and manage more than 3000 rental units in well located areas in Cape Town.
Over 90 years old, our organisation’s mission is to provide affordable housing sustainably in Cape Town for people of relatively low regular incomes along with opportunities for their economic upliftment. Our vision is to be an innovative contributor to building an equitable society characterised by dignity, self-awareness, access to opportunities, active involvement and community cohesion.
Founded in 1929 to assist with the housing crisis then experienced by low income or unemployed and predominantly white people, Communicare was once known as the Citizens Housing League Utility Company.
Over many years the organisation assisted in creating housing solutions for the vulnerable, particularly the elderly.
Under the apartheid spatial policy, Communicare was also contracted to build housing complexes for coloured and black people.
After apartheid the company renamed itself Communicare. New board members and staff took the reigns and the company committed itself to housing access and socio-economic transformation.
Communicare has evolved into a social enterprise that creates opportunities for rental accommodation for many people who were not previously able to access affordable or subsidised housing.
Not just another landlord, Communicare provides rental housing to a wide range of tenants including a large portfolio of social rentals (properties rented at discounted rates). Tenants who pay market rates enable the organisation to achieve a steady flow of annuity income allowing for discounted rentals to families in need. This social enterprise business model makes Communicare the most sustainable provider of discounted rentals in South Africa. Communicare manages its properties in separate portfolios. While it provides thousands of tenants with discounted rentals, three properties have been funded through the Social Housing Regulatory Authority and are subject to its regulations.
The social enterprise business model is a good model for organisations who are needing to be sustainable in their efforts to do social good. In this circular economic sustainability model, elements of the business model are designed to generate a profit in order to sustain those parts of the business that are not designed to be profitable and have a social goal in mind.
This puts people and social benefit at the centre of business.
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