The Mandela Scholarship Fund offers students from Southern Africa the opportunity to undertake postgraduate study at the University of Sussex.

The Fund was established by the University of Sussex Students' Union in 1973 to enable students to seek higher education in spite of discriminatory apartheid laws in South Africa.

Today it continues this tradition by recruiting students who are committed to educational, social, cultural and economic development.

With generous initial and continuing support from the University of Sussex, its staff and students, the Canon Collins Trust and the wider public, the Mandela Scholarship Fund now awards up to three scholarships annually for study at the University of Sussex.

“The transformation of our country into a non-racial democratic society requires that we develop a highly skilled workforce. In this way we can begin to discover ways to recover from the damage of apartheid. It is in this regard that we appeal to you for continued and expanded support.”
- Nelson Mandela writing to the Mandela Scholarship Fund in 1991

“Today the need for outstanding black leadership is greater than ever. I therefore call on you to support the Scholarship Fund generously so that young people may be adequately prepared to take on the responsibilities of the future.”
- Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Mandela Scholarship Fund video

You can support the Mandela Scholarship Fund

You can help with a one-off or regular donation. We're also keen to work with Sussex alumni and corporate donors

Donate now

Support the Fund

Fundraising is essential to enable us to continue our transformative work. Apartheid may have ended but the need is as great as ever for educated people committed to the building of successful societies in Southern African. It costs £12,000 to fund


The Sussex University Mandela Scholarships are offered at postgraduate level to those from countries within the SADAC region of Africa that have been disadvantaged through apartheid.

The Fund’s history

The original idea arose in 1973 from a desire to find some constructive way of opposing apartheid. Cam Matheson, then President of the Student Union, contacted friends in the South African Communist Party, and after discussion the idea of a