Giving refugees access to education

NUST is currently housing three refugee students from the Democratic Republic of Congo and Burundi through the Albert Einstein German Academic Refugee Initiative (DAFI) scholarship programme. It is implemented via the Society for Family Health (SFH) organisation and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. The SFH is a registered trust operating in Namibia since 1997 as a non-governmental organisation.

The initiative affords refugee students the opportunity to pursue an undergraduate degree in their country of asylum. “The students are currently studying Bachelor of Computer Science in Cyber Security, Bachelor of Engineering in Chemical Engineering and a Bachelor of Technology in Power Engineering programmes,” Sondaha Sakeus, the Education officer at SFH said.

To date, the programme has supported nine students in total, of which the other six are currently studying at the University of Namibia. The DAFI scholarships are provided largely in developing countries with a significant refugee population such as in Africa and Asia. The programme aims to support deserving refugee students to achieve self-reliance by providing them with a qualification to enhance their employability. Students who successfully qualify for the scholarships receive tuition fees, study material, food, transportation, accommodation and other allowances. DAFI students also receive additional support through close monitoring, academic preparatory and language classes based on their needs, as well as mentoring and networking opportunities. “The DAFI scholarships are only awarded for a maximum of four years of studying at Bachelors or equivalent degree levels,” Sakeus explained. In addition, she encouraged current scholarship holders to network in order to identify potential future scholarship providers if they wish to further their studies.

Date: 
Friday, April 16, 2021
for Month: 
April, 2021

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