Subsidized School Fees in South Africa

  • South Africa


Jesuit Refugee Service

Date program started:



  • Help make education more accessible to urban refugees in South Africa


  • Provide financial and material support to refugee children attending school
  • Increase knowledge of refugee education rights

Targeted population:

  • Primary and secondary age refugee children
  • Parents of refugee children
  • Social workers

Challenge addressed:

  • Economic barriers to education for urban refugee children
  • Lack of knowledge about refugee children’s right to education

Program description:

  • School fees for refugee children attending primary and secondary schools in Pretoria and Johannesburg were subsidized
  • Additional resources including stationary, books and school uniforms were provided
  • Transportation was also provided to ensure refugees could reach schools
  • Six workshops on education rights were held for the children’s parents
  • Social workers advocated for fee waivers or fee reduction for secondary school children

Impact on targeted population:

  • Finacial and material barriers to education were lowered for recipiant refugee children in Petoria and Johannesburg
  • In 2011, there were 3,700 people served by Jesuit Refugee Service’s education programs

Conditions required:

  • Refugee children’s enrolment in schools
  • Funds to be able to subsidize school fees and school supplies


JRS – Urban Refugees

JRS – Annual Report 2011

Our impact

  • 3700

    refugees have better access to education and livelihood opportunities

  • 40

    countries in which our partner NGOs are implementing solutions

  • 490

    refugee children benefit from mathematics, english, art and sports classes

  • 700

    women can now support their families

  • 650

    refugees have access to critical healthcare and safety information

Get Involved

We’ve accomplished so much, but the growing urgency of refugee issues in cities means we have a lot more to do and we can’t do it alone. Support the refugee communities that need it most.

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