How to raise cash for studies

If your family cannot afford to pay for your studies, don’t despair. There are several options available to deserving students who have trouble paying for their studies.

Tertiary education is very expensive. For example, the average tuition fee for first-year medical studies at Wits University will set you back up to R43 520 while a law degree costs R24 800 per year. This excludes accommodation, books, meals and travel costs.

The following are funding models you can use:

National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS)

This scheme offers a study loan if you are academically deserving and financially needy. To qualify, you must pass the means test, which will assess whether you are really needy. You can use your NSFAS loan to pay for tuition, books and accommodation.

At some universities the NSFAS will not pay for your accommodation, especially if you reside outside the campus. The NSFAS pays for registration at some institutions but not at others. You will be required to repay your loan after completing your studies.

NSFAS funding is only available to South African students registered at a public university or Further Education and Training college.

You only have to start paying back your loan one year after you have completed your studies, and only if you have a job and earn more than R30 000 per year. If you pass all your subjects, a maximum of 40% of the loan will be written off and you will only have to pay back 60%.

How to apply for NSFAS funding:

  • Apply to study at an institution of higher learning.
  • Complete a means test. The test will assess your family’s financial situation and calculate what amount, if any, your family will be expected to contribute towards your studies.
  • You may borrow the rest of the money from NSFAS or you might qualify for a bursary, which is also administered by NSFAS. You need to submit the following:
    • Grade 12 Certificate
    • A certified copy of your ID
    • Your parents’ salary slips and certified copies of their IDs
    • Proof of registration of siblings (brothers, sisters who have registered for studies at school) if they live in the same household.
    • If you are disabled, you’ll need a letter from your medical doctor as proof of permanent disability.

If your parents are unemployed, you will need an affidavit signed by a commissioner of oaths, such as a police officer. If you have siblings studying at tertiary level, provide certified copies of documentation showing this. The financial office at the institution will inform you whether your application has been successful.

Bank loans

Banks offer study loans, but the strict lending criteria can be a challenge and paying the money back after you have qualified and started working is not always the ideal way to start your career.

Some banks require surety or a guarantor, someone who will guarantee to repay the loan if you fail to do so. For further information, contact your local bank or visit its website.

Private financial services provider

A company such as Eduloan could be a viable choice as it focuses specifically on educational finance. You have to pay back your loan in fixed monthly instalments over a period ranging from six to 22 months.

You will need a guarantor who must submit a copy of his or her latest bank statement, latest pay slip, certified ID copy and a fee quotation from the institution.


Some students choose to work first or work part-time to earn money and save for their studies. People who choose this option often work really hard when they start.


There are corporate bursaries from companies such as Sasol, Eskom and Telkom available to students. These bursaries differ in selection criteria and in what they cover. Some of them are comprehensive, while others offer relatively small financing.

Most bursaries are renewable annually, depending on successful completion of the academic year. You should check the current bursary register book, which is usually available at high schools or the financial aid offices of universities, or you can visit the website of the company offering bursaries.

Government departments

Various government departments offer study bursaries to students who perform well and need funds to study. Most of these departments are at provincial government level and offer bursaries in line with their scope of work. For more information, contact the relevant provincial department. An example is the North West Department of Health, which offers bursaries for student to study medicine in Cuba.


Some municipalities offer bursaries in a way similiar to that of government departments to students who live in the specific municipality. For more information, contact your local municipality about bursaries or other available funding options.

For more information, visit or contact the Eduloan centre on campus. Contact the NSFAS Call Centre on 021 763 3232 or visit for more information.

Source: Vuk’uzenzele, November 2012

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Road safety – Arrive Alive

Together We Can Save Millions of Lives

The Easter and Festive Season (December/January) period in South Africa are often the leading critical periods for road traffic management authorities.

Road traffic fatalities are among the main causes of death in South Africa. This results in serious social and economic costs for the country. These consequences include the loss of family members, bread winners and leave behind traumatised families. Currently South Africa’s road fatalities remain unacceptably high at 40 road related deaths a day.

Road fatalities cost the country more than R3 billion each year, diverting scarce resources from other social and economic needs of the country.

South Africa is a signatory to the United Nations (UN) Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020. As such, the country has committed itself at an international level to reducing fatalities by 50% by the year 2020. This means that all the critical components that make up the “Safe Systems” approach under the 5 Pillars of the Road Safety Global Pillar must work in tandem to ensure that the greatest impact is made to offence rates and road traffic crash casualties.
Cause of accidents

The analysis of fatal crashes for the festive seasons of 2010 to 2012 and the crash trends of the recent few months have demonstrated that road crashes are caused by the following factors:

  •  excessive speeding
  •  drinking and driving
  •  drinking and walking / pedestrian safety
  •  driver fitness / fatigue
  •  moving violations.                   

Analysis of the contributory factors reveal that human factor is highest followed by vehicle and road factors.

The Accident Report of 2010/11 contains the following breakdown of the contributory factors:

Human factor

  • Speed too high for circumstances (40.4%)
  • Pedestrian jay walking (32.5%)
  • Overtook when unlawful or unsafe to do so (10.6%)
  • Fatigue (3.3%)
  • Hit and run (7.0%)
  • Close following distance (5.3%)

Vehicle factor

  • Tyre burst prior to crash (63.2%)
  • Faulty brakes (21.0%)
  • Faulty steering (15.8%)

Road factor

  • Sharp bend (50.0%)
  • Poor visibility (12.5%)
  • Poor condition of road surface (18.8%)
  • Road surface slippery or wet (12.5%)

Government plans

Government steps up operations through visible and proactive traffic enforcement on all key routes during the Easter and Festive Season periods. Our law enforcement agencies examine driver and vehicle safety, impounding un-roadworthy vehicles.

Public awareness and education are at the heart of the road safety strategy, while we continue to reinforce our law enforcement capabilities throughout the year.

We also have the International Road Assessment Programme which assesses road safety solutions that relate to road infrastructure. Under the programme, we are targeting 4 000 kilometres of road in the 2013/14 financial year.

The Road Traffic Infringement Agency, the Road Accident Fund and the Cross Border Road Transport Agency implement road safety programmes as set out in their respective Annual Performance Plans.

The Department of Transport is working with all stakeholders to revise the current road safety strategy taking into account our international commitments in terms of the UN Decade of Action 2011-2020 and the National Development Plan.

Government on road safety

Speeches and statements

Statements on road safety

Speeches on road safety

Opinion pieces

  • Put the brakes on dangerous driving, 3 Dec
  • Billions lost due to road fatalities, 16 October 2013
  • Putting brakes to the road carnage, 26 Mar 2013
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Domestic violence

The rigorous steps the justice, crime prevention and security (JCPS) cluster is taking to root out genderbased violence is the adoption of zero-tolerance towards rape, violation of the rights of lesbian,
gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people and other forms of violence towards women and children.

The Department of Justice and Constitutional Development (DoJ&CD) has, after engaging with Regional Court presidents, identified 57 Regional Courts across the country for use as dedicated Sexual Offences courts. The department allocated a separate budget in its 2013 MTEF to increase the capacity of these courts. The earmarked budget was used in particular for the following:

  • the creation of additional Regional magistrates’ posts to increase the capacity of these courts
  • appointment of additional personnel including intermediaries
  • skills development programmes and social context training for regional magistrates and personnel of these courts
  • enhancing the services provided by the TCCs which are essential in addressing secondary victimisation. More funds will be mobilised to increase the 51 TCCs across the country
  • the installation and maintenance of the technological equipment fi tted in the designated courts, such as CCTV cameras, to ensure the integrity of the judicial process.

The Ndabezitha Project with the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) trains traditional leaders and clerks of the court in domestic-violence matters in rural areas. This includes the development of a safety tool and intersectoral statistical tool by the NPA and the DoJ&CD.

The department engaged in research methodology called the 10-Year Review of Implementation of the Domestic Violence Act of 1998 aimed at taking stock of all initiatives and projects in courts and the CJS to address the reduction and prevention of domestic violence.

The Protection from Harassment Act, 2011 (Act 17 of 2011), is the first specific legislation to address sexual harassment in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region. The essence of the Act is to provide a quick, easy and affordable civil remedy in the form of a protection order for incidences of stalking. The legislation arose out of a SALRC investigation into the legal framework governing stalking and domestic violence. A key component of the Act is that it seeks to cover all forms of stalking, not just that involving people engaged in a relationship. A protection order can be issued instructing the harasser to cease harassment.

The Act sets out how a complainant is to apply for a protection order and the procedure to be followed in granting one. The legislation also provides for the issuing of an interim protection order without the knowledge of the respondent, given certain conditions. A victim of cyberstalking can apply to a court for an interim protection order even when the identity of the alleged stalker is unknown. The law will also empower the police to investigate a stalker to identify the perpetrator even before a victim launches an application for a protection order.

More on domestic violence.

Source: SA Yearbook 2013/14

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