The South African Education Project (SAEP) is a non-profit organisation, based in Cape Town, South Africa. Since 1994, we have provided education, life skills, and psycho-social support programmes for children youth and education providers. 

NPO 028 310 | PBO 930 010 069 | VAT 478 027 0082.


Unit B15, Waverley Court
7 Kotzee Rd, Mowbray, Cape Town, 7925


SAEP ECD Resource Centre
Beautiful Gate
Stock Road , Philippi East


2116 Chesapeake Harbour Drive
Annapolis, MD 21403


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Site by Grant Everist

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021 447 3610


+1 (410) 626-1747


Our programmes are all targeted at children, youth and/or education providers from under-resourced communities and have developed in response to specific needs expressed by learners, teachers or principals in the Philippi community.



Assisting to develop under-resourced township educare centres

After-school literacy strengthening at primary schools

Academic tutoring, life skills and career guidance for grades 8 & 9 learners

University preparedness and academic literacy skills for recent matriculants

Promoting retention and success in tertiary studies


We run projects at three critical phases in our beneficiaries’ education journeys
Foundation phase (early childhood development and primary school) to prepare children for education
High school phase to remedy the lack of high school readiness and address low information and communications technology (ICT) skill levels
Post matric programme to prepare students to succeed in higher education and support them through their tertiary studies

A number of common themes  cut across our programmes including: career guidance, psycho-social support, non-academic skills development, child protection, information and communication technology (ICT) skills development, environmental awareness, mentoring, and the promotion of gender equality and empowerment of women and girls.


Early Childhood Development (ECD) centres are places where toddlers and pre-school children are looked after while their guardians are working or looking for work. It is crucial that these centres provide age-appropriate stimulation and learning, but too often the principals and teachers do not have the necessary skills or knowledge.

Township educare centres face many challenges, including inadequate structures, inexperienced teachers, unhealthy learning environments, poor nutrition, and insufficient emphasis on children’s cognitive, physical, emotional and social development. Further, in order to register with government and receive subsidies, centres must meet minimum requirements in areas including infrastructure, financial management, curriculum and teacher training. Without funding or support, many centres struggle to upgrade and to meet government requirements.

SAEP works with centres over a period of several years to help them qualify for government registration and subsidies and to become self-sustainable, so that they can deliver quality early learning services to children in Philippi.

This gives these children the best possible foundation for their further education and careers.



total centres SAEP is working with in Philippi


children in those centres


workshops and training lessons last year alone


Grade 3 and 4 learners this past year


Grade 7 social work group participants


attendance this year—up from 69% last year!


The Siyakhathala Primary Programme aims to support the learners in literacy and lifelong learning. Our cohort are chosen across four grade 3 classes at Siyazakha Primary. By conducting the Learning Gym in this year group (the year prior to the transition to English as the language of learning) we hope to raise literacy levels in the home language (in this case isiXhosa) as research shows that taking on a second language is then boosted.

In our programme we 

  • concentrate on literacy by holding Reading groups within each session as well as some Free Choice Reading.  We include a vibrant story time each week as well, because there is little better than being read to!

  • are developing learning habits in our learners which will equip them to succeed as resourceful, reflective and resilient learners.

  • use our circle time activities as an opportunity to develop the learners’ emotional vocabulary and give them useful ways to deal with social and emotional aspects of their lives in a positive way.



Our Hope Scholars programme works with Grade 8 and 9 learners to identify and close educational gaps in key subjects so that they can excel in later grades

South African learners are under-performing significantly in mathematics, science and English literacy (subject tests are administered in English), which are vital subjects if learners are to pursue further studies and embark on successful careers in those fields. Our own experience working in Philippi high schools has shown that learners are drastically under-equipped for grades 10-12.

Our Hope Scholars

  • Are equipped with the academic and non-academic skills needed to thrive in grades 10-12 and achieve strong academic results, compared to their peers

  • Are actively engaged in their schools and in their communities through leadership development activities

  • Learn through environmental outings and experiential education

  • Show continued environmental responsibility

  • Go on to be a part of other academic support programmes in the FET phase


annual lessons in maths, english, and life skills


annual home visits


average grade 8 & 9 learners per year


Many learners finish their matric with bachelor or diploma passes, only to find that they are not admitted to tertiary studies because their results weren’t quite good enough. Some are able to enter matric rewrite programmes to improve their marks, but once they enter tertiary studies, they often find that they aren’t equipped with the skills they need to succeed in university.


We partner with matric re-write projects, students work on their academics with our partners while learning university preparedness skills with SAEP. Our team works closely with its partners to monitor student performance and progress and make interventions when needed.


Bridging Year program is open to all post-secondary students from across Cape Town and beyond. Applicants are assessed on their Grade 12 results as well as factors such as resilience, independence, confidence, commitment to serve others and determination to succeed.


Our Bridging Year programme includes:

  • Preparation for University & College life

  • Career guidance and assistance with university/college and bursary application

  • Skills to help you succeed at college or university

  • Academic literacy, including researching, writing, referencing and exam techniques

  • Computer skills

  • Responsive psycho-social services & referral

  • Personal development sessions, focusing on emotional and relationship dynamics, critical thinking and issues relevant to student life

  • Hikes and educational excursions

  • Community Service, leading students to give back to their communities



students since 2010


improvement in essay writing and professional emails


of students completed at least 25 hours of community service


Our Tertiary Support programme assists tertiary students who have graduated through our high school and Bridging Year programmes and are at risk of not being able to complete their studies due to a variety of socio-economic challenges.

We provide financial, academic and psycho-social support. We also help to connect our students to existing support structures and resources in their places of learning.

Our support includes:

  • Help students apply for bursaries and National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS)

  • Career guidance and course selection advice

  • Facilitate mentorships, job shadowing and internships

  • Provide potential funding opportunities to those that need financial support

  • Regular life skills workshops bringing together students to discuss coping strategies for university success

Read more about the advisory programme or fill out the 2019 application.



students supported for the year


students graduated


advisory relationships facilitated