Community-based Monitoring

Community-Based Monitoring (CBM) provides a mechanism for civil society to gather and analyse information from the service users’ points of view. Black Sash works with Community Partners across the country to monitor and gather evidence about the quality of services people are receiving.


  • Government service sites monitored by Community Partners (CPs) practicing the CBM model, have contributed to improved and more responsive service delivery with four government service sectors: SASSA, Health, Local Government and Home Affairs.
  • This has been achieved through advocating for open, transparent and accountable governance by promoting civic engagement to realise socio economic rights.
  • Civil society organisations, particularly Community Based Organisations including Advice Offices, have improved skills to implement the Community Based Monitoring (CBM) model.

The Black Sash model of Community Based Monitoring is an excellent example of how civil society and service users can contribute both to improved service delivery and to democratic governance.

Improved service delivery is achieved through facilitating state-community partnerships to monitor and enhance programme implementation at the level of the service centre or facility level. A lack of service delivery is scaled up to an appropriate higher level of government.

Democracy is improved by empowering local activists and service users to participate at the local level, and building alliances amongst civil society organisations. 


40 government service sites monitored by Community Partners (CPs) practicing CBM, ensuring women’s priorities are considered & addressed, for improved & more responsive service delivery.

The core of the model is the formation of partnerships with both community-based organisations (CBOs) and government in order to strengthen the role of civil society in improving service delivery and holding public and private sectors to account. It is against the background of the importance of socio-economic rights, and civil society’s role in helping secure these, that the significance of Black Sash’s seven-step model of Community Based Monitoring becomes clear.