Responding to poverty and injustice in Cape Town

Common Good creates opportunities for those marginalised by poverty and injustice to realise their full, God-given potential, and mobilizes the church to engage and act justly.

Common Good was founded by Common Ground Church in 2005 as an independent and registered non-profit. What began as a staff of one and a half, has grown into multiple teams of development practitioners and specialists. On any given day, we impact thousands of lives in Cape Town and beyond through our Early Life, Education and Employment initiatives. We believe that investing in these three areas, while mobilising the church to live a lifestyle of justice, has the greatest potential for positive change in our society.


South Africa  is one of the most beautiful countries in the world – celebrated for its magnificent scenery and rich diversity. But, the landscape of our society is deeply marred.

The inequality of our painful past continues to trap people in cycles of poverty, excluding them from opportunities to rewrite the narrative of their lives.

At every stage of life, there are so many barriers to fulfilling their God-given potential, and this is a great injustice.


Common Good’s vision is for a society where individuals, communities and The Church are living and acting justly so that those marginalised by injustice are transformed and flourishing physically, spiritually, economically and socially, all for the glory of God.

We exist to create opportunities for people to realise their full, God-given potential by:

  • Addressing injustices in early life, education and employment that impede the development of marginalised people;
  • Inspiring, mobilising and equipping church communities to engage with and respond to injustices that perpetuate inequality and human suffering.


Common Good focuses on three key stages of human development, when the opportunity to nurture  intrinsic potential is most significant.

Through our triple-E strategy we seek to be a catalyst for positive impact in the lives of infants in their first thousand days, young learners in non-fee paying schools, and the unemployed seeking opportunity to carve out a better life for themselves and their families.

Early Life

There is overwhelming evidence that the first thousand days of life determines the long-term prospects of the most vulnerable children in society. By equipping caregivers, parents and support networks to provide the crucial building blocks necessary for healthy physical, emotional and intellectual development, we can change the trajectory of young lives forever.


We believe that children in non-fee paying schools have the right to excellent education. Through a growing network of schools we seek to ignite and nurture potential, and work from within the system to provide good governance and management in at-risk schools.


Over a quarter of our population is crippled by unemployment. Of those, the majority are also unemployable – lacking the skills they need to seek and find reliable work. Our job readiness training equips graduates to confidently enter the workplace, and provides connections to meaningful work.

Congregational Support

A significant part of our work focuses on encouraging and equipping the church to embrace a lifestyle of social justice. We develop resources, offer courses and host events that encourage ordinary Capetonians to grapple with and respond to issues of diversity and inequality in our city.

Practitioners, church leaders and congregants engaging with our Early Life research
Learners receiving improved instruction in three schools in Bonteheuwel and Hout Bay
of our 840 work readiness graduates connected to meaningful opportunities
Justice Journey participants and 123 volunteers mobilised

Our values

Value each other

Sawubona – see and honour all

Love generously

Love others as Jesus loves us

Live with integrity

Walk the talk with authenticity

Pursue Excellence

Give our best – people deserve it

Inspire innovation

Create and motivate for greater impact

Team together

Work together to serve better


Common Good is led by a management team of development specialists who have experience in both the corporate and NGO sectors, locally and internationally. With our track record of impact, robust governance practices and solid financial management structures, Common Good is a trusted NGO and development partner working primarily in the Western Cape, South Africa. We have received clean, professional audits year on year since inception and we have proudly maintained Level 1 B-BBEE status*.

To achieve the greatest impact we regularly partner with church networks, other NGOs and the government sector to create ecosystems that will drive scalable change. Furthermore, we are endorsed and supported by a loyal base of funding organisations, private enterprise and individual donors.

Meet our Board of Directors | View our 2020 Annual Report | News | Join our team

*Qualifying criteria for Level1 B-BBEE: 75% or more beneficiaries are black South Africans