Social Work & Education

Volunteering in South Africa: Social Work & Education

Our volunteer placements in the field of Social Work & Education in South Africa allow you to make a meaningful contribution to improve access to education for South Africa’s poorest population groups.


Many studies about poverty alleviation strategies around the world show that early childhood development programmes as well as good school education are key to a succesful life. Even Nelson Mandela, South Africa’s first democratically elected president, was convinced that education is the most powerful weapon to fight poverty and to change the world.


Volunteer in public schools, nursery schools or in grass-roots community organisations that offer extra-mural educational and after schools programmes for children, youth and adults and make a meaningful contribution to the ongoing transformation process from Apartheid to democracy in South Africa.


By doing so you will experience a fascinating country on the African continent and get a deep insight into the achievements and challenges of a young democracy and an emerging market economy on the African continent.


As part of live&learn’s Volunteer Programme Social Work&Education you can support the following projects:

Township Nursery Schools

This project trains local women in townships as early childhood educators and supports them with opening their own nursery schools to improve income generating opportunities as well as educational services in Cape Town's townships. Because of the huge demand the classes in these nursery schools are rather big and the educators are grateful for your support in running the educational programmes.

Education & Social Work

In this holistic project that operates besides a children's home for vulnerable children a nursery school as well as a primary and high school you can assist educators, teachers or social worker. You also help running the after schools programme, where you facilitate sports activities, music or arts classes.

Community Centre Kindergarten

Would you like to collect practical experience in early childhood development and pre-school education in multi-confessional and multi-cultural classes? Then volunteering in the kindergarten of this multi-confessional community centre in one of Cape Town's poorest neighbourhoods is an exciting experience for you.

Cosmopolitan Primary School

In this small cosmopolitan Primary School you have the opportunity to assist teachers as well as the school's administration team. Depending on your skills and time of the year you will assist classes for learners with special learning needs as well as the organisation of events such as theatre plays, concerts, camp outs or sports days.

Mother&Child Care Centre

This long-standing project in the heart of Cape Town offers temporary shelter and support to pregnant women and single mothers in need. Depending on your background and interest you can either support the educators in the child care centre or social interventions with the mothers.

Primary and High School

Would you like to get an insight into the South African school system and at the same time foster education for children from disdavantaged backgrounds? Assist the team of teachers of this Primary and High School with special learning support for children with learning barriers, reading support classes, computer literacy classes, sports and/or career orientation.

Baby Sanctuary near Cape Town

This long-standing baby sanctuary near Cape Town offers babies and toddlers with chronic diseases or challenges in their families a temporary home till they can be reunited with their families or till a foster family has been found. As a volunteer you assist the team of carers, social workers, therapists and remedial educators with all tasks to care, heal and foster babies and toddlers.

Social Work in Cape Town

If you would like to collect hands-on experience with grass-roots community work and/or social work, volunteering in this grass-roots community centre in one of Cape Town's oldest informal settlements is a perfect opportunity for you. The centre offers a variety of programmes to alleviate poverty and (domestic) violence and drug abuse and works with children, youth and adults.

Youth Work Cape Town

In this organisation you can assist in particular after schools programmes for school children in Cape Town's township Gugulethu. Besides homework classes you will also help facilitate leisure time activities such as sports, music, arts, chess, and you will also assist with the planning and implementation of holiday programmes.

Teaching in Foster Families

Volunteering in this project allows you to get a deep insight into the social and educational challenges in South Africa. Depending on your skills you assist foster mothers with home work support as well as therapeutic interventions and the facilitation of spare time activities including holiday programmes.

Special Needs School in Cape Town

Would you like to collect experiences with teaching learners with special needs? Assist teachers and therapists in this school for learners with severe learning or physical disabilities in Cape Town as a classroom facilitator and get to know the holistic approach to learning and healing of the school.

Educational Support Project

This project was founded to assist particularly gifted children from low income families to access good secondary and tertiary school education. Depending on your skills you assist the team with homework support, the organisation of leisure activities, events as well as parenting workshops.

You didn’t find what you were looking for? Check out other volunteer placements:
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