The small business sector is regarded as a catalyst of employment for the largest number of people around the world. To reduce massive unemployment and inequality in the country, the Government of South Africa introduced various initiatives to stimulate and support small businesses, and the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) is one such initiative. The enterprise development approach, which seeks to transfer income to poor households in the short to medium term, is one of the delivery mechanisms of the EPWP. This study critically assesses the impact and effectiveness of the training and support interventions provided to small businesses through the EPWP. The study employs a quantitative research method due to the size, availability, and ease of access of the participants, and the entire population of 20 small businesses, supported by the EPWP in the Pretoria region, was sampled. A questionnaire-based survey was conducted. The study demonstrates that the training intervention provided by the EPWP has a positive impact and achieves its intended goal of enhancing the business management skills of participants. It also reveals an interesting outcome, i.e., that the majority of the participants are women. The study also identified some weaknesses in the programme, which led to the recommendation that long-term support mechanisms are essential for ensuring the sustainability of emerging enterprises.
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