Since the 1990s we have supported scholarships for refugees, internally displaced, marginalised and conflict-affected communities in Sudan.
WTI currently manages two tertiary education scholarship programmes in Sudan:
- The DAFI programme for refugees throughout the country
WTI has been UNHCR's implementing partner for the DAFI (Albert Einstein German Academic Refugee Initiative) scholarship programme, supported by the German Government since 2005. The DAFI programme is also managed by the Windle Trusts in Kenya and Uganda.
- The Urban Refugee Tertiary Education Programme for 300 scholarships was introduced in 2018 specifically for urban refugees in Khartoum State
This programme, funded through UNHCR, aims to offer better access to educational opportunities so that young people refrain from seeking to migrate through unofficial and dangerous routes.
Together the programmes support around 400 refugee students to study undergraduate level courses at universities and colleges in Sudan. They study a wide range of subjects essential for economic and social development such as engineering, agriculture, health, rural and community development, economics, computing and management. Students selected for sponsorship are from disadvantaged backgrounds and in need of financial support, with academic ability, leadership potential and a commitment to their community.
The scholarships provide vital access to education for young refugees in Sudan otherwise unable to fulfill their potential due to financial and social disadvantage, particularly girls. Many are unable to access higher level education and training, as they lack the finances to do so. They either cannot start, drop out, or their performance is affected as a result of their disadvantaged circumstances.
The profile of supported refugees reflects the fact that the majority of refugees in Sudan are from South Sudan following the outbreak of conflict there at the end of 2013.
Across both programmes we have achieved gender parity. However, a particular achievement of DAFI is the promotion of women’s education, with around 70% of supported scholars being female. Girls supported on the programmes serve as role models in their communities by the fact that they have been able to go onto tertiary education. With the problem of high dropout rates of girls from education at secondary level, it is important to show young girls and their families that there are opportunities for them.
As part of the selection process applicants are asked about their community work. Many girls are active in volunteer work in their communities with most working with children, particularly helping them with their education and school work - providing not only practical assistance but also inspiration and hope.
Scholarship opportunities are usually available annually subject to funding and scholarships will be advertised on our how to apply page and locally in Sudan.
“Today I am the role model in my village. I encourage the parents to send their children to school and to be ambitious, for I alone cannot develop our town. People react positively and use my achievements as an example for their children. I have the confidence that a brighter future is ahead of us”. Former Sudan DAFI graduate