The Scalabrini Centre of Cape Town is a non-profit organisation offering specialised services to migrants, refugees, and South Africans. Scalabrini’s services focus in four key areas including: Para-legal Advice, Advocacy & Research, Development & Integration and Well-being & Welfare. Scalabrini Centre’s mandate is to advocate for human rights and achieves this through a holistic approach that considers all basic needs.
UpLearn, launched in 2018, works in partnership with the non-profit Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) to support 150 migrants and refugees to obtain fully accredited competency-based Associates and Bachelor’s degrees at no cost to the students. The degrees offered include Communications, Management, and Healthcare Management.
UpLearn is a part of the Global Education Movement (GEM) launched by SNHU in 2018 in four different countries: South Africa, Malawi, Kenya, and Lebanon. The project is grounded in SNHU’s pioneering work with vulnerable learners and refugees in Rwanda. Based on this model, the University has partnered with Scalabrini to facilitate the delivery of a blended learning programme. Together, we address the reality that worldwide there are more than 65 million refugees and other displaced peoples and only 1% have access to higher education. The objective of the initiative is to give those who may be prohibited from accessing tertiary education by financial or legal barriers an opportunity to empower themselves through education.
The programme facilitates the successful online learning of its students through a comprehensive support system which includes: a pre-degree programme that offers academic English classes and digital literacy training, a learning centre which includes a computer lab and a classroom, printed resources, in-lab academic assistance, case-by-case welfare support, interactive teaching seminars, enrichment workshops and activities, a weekly English club, one-on-one coaching, internship placement support, and professional development workshops.