About AAI South Africa

The South Africa office of the Africa-America Institute was established in 1992 with a mandate to liaise with the Governments of Southern Africa, U.S. agencies operating in Southern Africa, the regional NGOs and donor organizations as well as the business communities.

  To meet the Institute's objectives, the South Africa office has a dual purpose:
  • To enter into partnership with local agencies, NGOs and business that promote the country's post-apartheid transformation and development in political, economic and cultural spheres.
  • To work collaboratively with governmental agencies and NGOs to promote Regional cooperation and integration within the member states of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and elsewhere in Africa.

The various activities of the South Africa office to date have ensured that the Institute's objectives are achieved. Through the several partnerships it has forged with local NGOs and the funding sourced from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the AAI South Africa office has actively participated in the democratic transition of the country and provided a foundation for the promotion of sustainable development within the region

  Some specific activities attributable to these partnerships include the following:
  • In 1993 a partnership with the Educational Opportunities Council (EOC) was launched to administer the South African Black University Faculty Skills Enhancement Program (SABUFSEP) to provide junior faculty from Historically Disadvantaged Institutions with the opportunity to spend six months at select U.S. universities for research and internships
  • A partnership with the Institute for Contextual Theology (ICT) in providing technical assistance to the Independent Electoral Commission during the first democratic elections held in 1994
  • In subsequent elections, partnerships were formed with providers of voter education, such as the South African Council of Churches (SACC), the Cooperative for Research and Education (CORE), the Voter's Education Campaign (VECC) and the Educational Support Service Trust (ESST)
  • In collaboration with the Historically Disadvantaged Institutions (HDIs) the AAI South Africa office administered the African Training for Leadership and Advanced Skills Program (ATLAS). This program prepares individuals for Masters and doctoral degrees in the United States

Fulbright-Hays Seminars Abroad: Since 1996 the AAI South Africa office has managed and administered the Fulbright-Hays Seminars Abroad Program. This program brings together educators from various parts of the United States and affords the educators the opportunity of studying and traveling in South Africa where they interact with academicians, government officials, the business community and representatives from NGOs. They also experience the ethnic and cultural diversity of South Africa through visits to different regions both rural and urban


African Perspectives Initiatives: Seminars on topical issues have been arranged with interest groups. During the introduction of the African Growth and Opportunities Act (AGOA), South African positions and inputs were obtained and forwarded to Washington/DC for submission to the U.S Congress, and roundtable discussions were organized as part of a study entitled U.S. and Western Policy Responses to HIV/AIDS in Africa

AAI South Africa continues to play a role in activities that are designed to benefit the peoples of Southern Africa and guarantee sustainable development in the long term. With this record of activities the South Africa office of the Africa-America Institute is well placed to ensure that the Ford Foundation International Fellowships Program is administered in a manner consistent with high standards of professionalism