Help foster cultural, social and economic integration between migrants, refugees and South Africans.
Are you looking for work experience in the nonprofit sector, and do have an interest in refugee and migration issues? We have a refugee charity internship that offers this experience. As an intern you’ll join a nonprofit organisation as an allrounder, and assist daily operations. It’s a great way to get an in-depth understanding of the daily runnings of a nonprofit organization, to work directly with refugees, and to gain varied work experience.
You’ll be part of an NGO that’s on a mission to alleviate poverty and promoting development in the Western Cape while fostering cultural, social and economic integration between migrants, refugees, and South Africans. Your tasks will be greatly varied; you might find yourself teaching English, assisting individual refugees with various challenges they’re facing, getting involved with communications tasks, or helping with monitoring and evaluation activities. It’s an excellent opportunity to learn how to work in a nonprofit environment, interact with people of diverse cultures and gain insight into the different project areas.
This organization started in Cape Town in 1994 as religious assistance to different communities of migrants but soon expanded to offering more tangible assistance as they were confronted with the problems experienced by refugees from Angola, the Congos, Rwanda, Burundi and other African communities. In 2003 a secular non-government organization was started to run these projects, the Scalabrini Center of Cape Town (SCCT).
Migration is perceived as an opportunity by this organization, so they are on a mission to alleviate poverty and promoting development in the Western Cape while fostering cultural, social and economic integration between migrants, refugees, and South Africans. In providing their assistance they advocate respect for human rights and use a holistic approach that considers all basic needs.
Every month around 2000 people visit the center, which offers service through six main programme areas:
- Advocacy: Protecting, promoting and advancing the rights and freedoms of migrants and refugees by providing paralegal advice and practical assistance to individuals on a walk-in basis. In addition, this team works on driving deeper systemic change in the South African society and immigration and asylum systems.
- English School: Providing a specialized English language school for refugees and migrants.
- Employment Access: Providing a gateway to employment by providing support to foreign nationals who are legally entitled to look for work in South Africa. The organization provides a combination of skills training, professional development, and resources needed for success in the job market.
- Unite: A unique extra-curricular curriculum for grade 8-11, which provokes a deep exploration of the themes of identity, integration, and diversity to promote activism and critical thought in youth living in South Africa.
- Welfare: Accessing services for migrants and refugees in need. Through a process of consultation, they assist individuals to access basic services such as medical care, schooling, shelter, South African Social Grants (SASSA grants) and assistance with advice/application for voluntary repatriation.
- Women’s Platform: A multi-national network of women that strengthens individuals to enhance economic independence and integration into the broader South African community.
TASKS & REQUIreMENTS
This organization is looking for capable, willing, and flexible people to assist with a variety of day to day tasks. This Migrants and Refugee Charity Internship is an all-round internship. It introduces you to a wide range of duties while familiarizing you with all the different aspects of this nonprofit organization. You will learn how to work in an NGO environment, get to interact with people of diverse cultures and gain insight into the different project areas.
- English School – Filling in for absent English School teachers, tutoring students, assisting with extra-curricular activities where needed and providing English School resource support.
- Reception – Covering the reception area for a period of time daily when the receptionist is away from the desk; assisting the Receptionist with various tasks.
- Program Support – Assisting various programs where needed; joining the Employment Help Desk team when shorthanded, providing support to our Women’s Platform, attending meetings and events.
- Creative and Organizational Projects – Plan and execute a variety of hands-on projects around the Centre, such as designing and creating flyers and posters for programs and events, developing tools and resources for programs and clients, and planning and organizing events.
- General – Wherever and whatever help is needed. This may include data entry, running errands, making photocopies, helping out with day to day tasks to ensure all the projects of the Centre can run smoothly.
- Pro-active engagement and willingness to get involved in various activities, from the repetitive and mundane to highly demanding and independent projects.
- Independent and very flexible, able to deal with changing daily needs of the organization
- Good oral and written communication skills in English, French an advantage
- Enjoy working with people of different cultures
- Minimum age 20 preferred
- Minimum availability of 3 months
This organization also offers internships in Communications, English School, Human Rights and Advocacy, Female empowerment, and Empowerment of Refugees.
WHERE YOU’LL STAY
You’ll be staying at The Lenox, a comfortable guesthouse in the heart of Cape Town. Built in the old Cape Dutch style, The Lenox is characterful and historic. It has multiple balconies, a large dining room, and many other communal spaces. Shared bedrooms include 2 twin beds, and there are plenty of single rooms available as well (at an extra fee). You’ll be walking distance from many shops, cafes, restaurants, and some of the touristy highlights Cape Town has to offer as well.
Safety & Support
Be sure to prioritize hydration in the summer to avoid heatstroke. South Africa does have high crime rates, so it’s important to be aware and use common sense to stay safe. Some safety guidelines are to always walk in groups, take a taxi/Uber in the evenings, know safe/dangerous areas, secure your belongings, don’t walk around with large sums of cash (you can pay everything with a card), minimize wearing flashy accessories, and be cautious of overly friendly strangers.
The accommodation offers free Wi-Fi to keep family and friends up to date via WhatsApp, Zoom, etc. Cafes/restaurants also offer free Wi-Fi. You can also consider getting a local SIM card if your phone is unlocked, or setting your phone’s status to roaming, depending on your provider’s rates.
A simple breakfast, lunch and a delicious cooked dinner (vegetarian & vegan options available) from Monday to Friday are included in your fee. Indulge in local dishes, like bobotie and South African Braai! For desserts, don’t miss out on milk tarts and malva pudding. There is a diverse food scene in Cape Town, so no matter your cuisine preference or dietary restrictions you’ll have plenty of options. Let us know in advance if you have any allergies/dietary needs.
Discover Cape Town’s attractions: Table Mountain, Kirstenbosch Gardens, city tours, historical sites, and the Cape Point Peninsula. There are also opportunities to surf, kayak, paraglide, cage dive with sharks, and more! Cape Town has a mediterranean climate with cool winters and hot summers so be sure to check what the temperature will be like during your stay.
DATES & RATES
You can start your internship every week, so your final starting date is based on what suits you and the organization the best. Please keep in mind this organization is closed for four weeks of summer holiday in December and January.
What you’ll pay (2024 rates)
12 WEEKS USD 2,279
17 WEEKS USD 2,856
21 WEEKS USD 3,318
26 WEEKS USD 3,896
At Roots, we do everything we can to make your internship experience smooth and hassle-free. We offer an all-inclusive service, which means we will help you find the right internship (we believe we are great matchmakers!), help you with visa arrangements, book accommodation for you in Cape Town, give you all the pre-departure information you need before arriving, pick you up from the airport and check in with you while on your work placement to ensure you feel supported.
- Transfer from Cape Town International airport to your accommodation and back on arrival and departure day
- Accommodation based on a dorm room (4-8 pax). If you prefer a single room, please contact us for availability and prices
- Two meals (breakfast and dinner) a day from Monday to Friday
- Assistance with your visa arrangement & other preparations
- On the ground support during your stay
- Free WiFi
- Assistance with finding the perfect work placement
- Supervision during your internship
- Check-in and feedback as well as a reference letter after your internship
- Your own account on a career development platform that offers content and courses focused on exploring different career opportunities
- Reference letter at the end of your internship
- A discount on weekend activities, exclusive to Roots interns
- Visa, medical and travel insurance costs for the duration of your placement – must include cover for repatriation
- Lunch, drinks, snacks, and items of personal nature (f.e. curios, gifts, clothing)
- Meals during the weekend
- Transport to the office
- Costs for additional excursions or activities
Some of our most commonly asked questions for programs in South Africa.
During your internship in South Africa you can expect to meet people from around the world, as well as indulging yourself into the culture of this beautiful country! If you want to know more about what to expect, make sure to check out our top 7 reasons for an internship in Cape Town.
Yes! We partner with various activity organizers that can offer discounts exclusive to Roots Interns, for example, a road trip through the Garden Route and bungee jumping off the world’s largest natural bungee. You may also explore the country on your own and we are happy to give recommendations.
Yes! You are able to do a part-time internship with certain organizations so that you can continue your studies, while also gaining valuable work experience.
Unfortunately, no. When working with a nonprofit organization, your internship will be unpaid, but there are many ways to fund your internship. Your experience will bring a wealth of knowledge and opportunities for both professional and personal growth that are invaluable!
“I've been volunteering as an All-Rounder three times already, and after working there for 9 months in total, I can honestly say, it was one of the best things I did in my life! You work wherever help is needed, which makes it the perfect opportunity to get to know all the different projects and topics at this nonprofit. And the best thing is you are part of a team with the most amazing colleagues! I would definitely come back a fourth time too.”
“This internship has been unforgettable and has played a large role in my professional development. The people I worked with are passionate about support students and are driven to achieve the most positive outcomes for our recipients. I gained a lot of experience and knowledge from my work here which is something I would not have learned from a classroom setting. I plan to continue working in the non-profit sector in my career. This internship showed me the background of how organizations are run and the kind of admin needed for success.”Prajna Naidoo
- Get practical experience working in an NGO environment
- Learn about African culture and the lives of refugees in their country of origin
- Gain insight in the different project areas of this NGO to support refugees and migrants
- Live and work in Cape Town, arguably one of the most stunning cities in the world
- Enjoy exploring South Africa’s many highlights during your time off
- 8-26 weeks
- Cape Town, South Africa
- Research, Awareness, Case Assistance
Migrants & Refugee Charity Internship
- 12-26 weeks
- Cape Town, South Africa
- Refugees and migrants, all-round
Empowerment of Refugees Internship
- Min. 5 months
- Cape Town, South Africa
- Refugees and migrants, skills development, monitoring, reporting, social welfare