Study Fund for South African Students

    The Dutch universities welcome foreign students into their course programmes. To enable students from South Africa to use this opportunity, there is a specific fund that offers financial support: the Foundation Study Fund for South African Students (SSF). Are you interested in coming to the Netherlands for a period of 3 to 6 months or for a short academic visit to gain knowledge and skills in the field of the Humanities and to make both personal and professional friends for life? Do you need financial support to make this happen? Then the SSF may be able to help you. Please read the various sections of this website, and contact us with any questions that you still may have. Then start the application procedure by downloading and completing the application form and compiling all the papers we need to receive.

    The Foundation Study Fund for South African Students (SSF) is part of a greater organisation, the Zuid-Afrika Huis in Amsterdam, a private institution, that aims to maintain and promote the cultural ties between the Netherlands and South Africa (see:

    The SSF, established in 1885, is rooted in the history that firmly links South Africa with the Netherlands. It affirmed affinity with South Africa throughout its process of transformation and it now wants to contribute towards the building of a democratic society by offering young, bright South Africans the opportunity to gain access to high-quality education and research in the Netherlands.

    Traditionally, the Dutch and Afrikaans languages are strong vehicles to maintain and strengthen the cultural links between the two countries, and projects in the realm of languages and literature are therefore an obvious focus of (people applying for a scholarship of) the SSF. However, there is ample evidence that the two countries have more to offer each other: academic links, exchanges and collaboration comprise all areas of the humanities.

    The special niche of the SSF

    Since 2006 the SSF has its own new niche in the field of scholarships. It provides bursaries to South African students who want to participate for a 3 to 6 months period in exchange programmes between Dutch and South African universities or research institutes in the field of the Humanities, in order to obtain an Master degree or a Doctorate at their home university in South Africa.

    The SSF also provides travel allowances for short term visits to the Netherlands to do research, attend academic courses, conferences and master classes.


    To be eligible for a SSF Scholarship you:

    • must have South African nationality;
    • must be registered as student at a South African university;
    • must be accepted at one of the Dutch universities or recognised research institutions
    • must show working knowledge of the relevant language of instruction / research collaboration (generally English and/or Dutch)
    • must have your study field in the Humanities.


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    A scholarship covers a monthly allowance of € 970 or €1190 (PhD) (including medical insurance and the costs of a visa) and a travel allowance of € 1000. The amount is calculated on the living cost of a (single) student and would not be sufficient for a couple or family. The student must remember to bring enough money for extra expenses during the first few weeks of his/her stay.

    A travel allowance for short visits amounts to € 1.200 p.p.

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