Study abroad in South Africa


South Africa

The Cape Town Refugee Centre is a nonprofit that serves the needs of vulnerable refugees and asylum-seekers. Begun in 1994, the center was developed as a collaborative community effort in response to the growing number of refugees arriving in South Africa. The center advocates on behalf of refugees and asylum seekers to protect their rights, facilitates integration into communities, responds to xenophobic violence, and provides material and psycho-social support.

Cape Town Refugee Centre’s vision is to act as an integral part of a welcoming and enabling environment where refugees are integrated within South Africa. They offer programs and services in:



Abigail Maristela

Every day at the Cape Town Refugee Centre is different exciting experience. I have been working under the social cohesion/education department. The Cape Town Refugee Centre assists and provides programs for over 10,000 refugees and asylum seekers. At The Cape Town Refugee At the Cape Town Refugee centre I have many responsibilities working under a social worker. When clients visit the centre for the first time I will interview them and learn their story. I will then assess their refugee status and current vulnerability. Based on their circumstance and our budget, I can issue food vouchers, refer to counseling or legal services, request further interviews for a grant, or put them on a home visit list. On days that I am not doing intake interviews I go on home visits with the social workers to assess the clients living conditions. After conducting a home visit the CTRC can financially assist with rent. I write up motivations for assistance if assistance is to be granted. I also create and run programs for refugee youth and elderly refugees. Working at the CTRC has taught me about conflict issues across the continent, how social programs function, and has given me insight into the rich lives of many amazing people.

There are challenges and triumphs at the CTRC. For me personally it is emotionally difficult to hear the past and current struggles that the refugees bear. However, there are many moments that make me loving working at this inspiring and important organization. The CTRC excels in integrating and empowering refugees to live a better life here in Cape Town. We strongly recommend English proficiency classes and job readiness preparation at sister organizations.

Many South African’s are not aware of the situation that refugees in their country face. In fact, sometimes South Africans impede the well being of refugees. In order for the lives of refugees to improve, the community they live in must be supportive and conducive to their lives and livelihoods. Refugees are a part of South Africa not apart from it, thus refugees suffer at the expense of all of South Africa. The CTRC works on raising awareness to the community of refugees to enable them to live a better life and help themselves, which leads all of South Africa to a brighter future.



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Office of International Education

OIE works to promote the internationalization of Marquette University by recruiting and advising international students and scholars, developing vibrant partnerships with international institutions and providing innovative study abroad opportunities.
Office of International Education