our history

1972
Education without Borders

Education without Borders Founders, Ruth and Cecil Hershler, decide to leave apartheid South Africa but want to make a positive impact before immigrating to Canada. They seek out a black township school to work with. A lasting relationship with Fezeka Senior Secondary school begins. The original site of Fezeka is Phillipi township, outside of Cape Town, South Africa.

The school is in great disrepair. Over the next two years, a library and science lab are created, a hall and fence are built and the roof is repaired.

1976
Fezeka burns down
Fezeka Senior Secondary school burns down in the Soweto riots. The school is relocated to its current site in Gugulethu township, outside of Cape Town, South Africa. Half of the school is housed in temporary portables.
2001
Eight new classrooms
Over the next two years, EwB builds eight new classrooms at Fezeka Senior Secondary school.
2003
Building load paid off
Over a three year period, EwB raises funds in Canada to pay off the building loan. During this period, EwB plans the next phase of assistance.
2005
Volunteer programme

Education without Borders implements a volunteer programme. The first volunteer Canadian teacher arrives at Fezeka Senior Secondary school and teaches Grades 10, 11 and 12 English. The volunteer’s experience helps EwB gain a deeper understanding of the challenges in township schools.

2008
Maths programme launched

Education without Borders launches a six-week mathematics after-school programme, with six teachers and 150 Grade 9 learners. This initial after-school programme provides the foundation for a more extensive after-school programme.

2009
Further programmes launched

Education without Borders creates an after-school programme in mathematics and English for Grades 8, 9 and 10. The programme uses university students as tutors. Education without Borders funds photographic arts and dance programmes.

2010
Library Project Cordinator
Over two years, EwB funds a library project coordinator.
2011
School garden built and film festival launched
Education without Borders builds a school garden. EwB launches its first South African Film Festival (SAFF) in Vancouver, Canada.
2012
New library
A fully functioning library is created at the Fezeka school campus by EwB with support from EwB’s library project coordinator and other partners.
2013
Programmes expaned

Education without Borders expands its programmes to Mseki Primary school in Gugulethu township.

2015
EwB expands

Education without Borders applies its experience in township schools in South Africa to the Canadian context. It begins to serve Indigenous children and their communities in British Columbia, Canada.

EwB expands its South African Film Festival (SAFF) to Toronto, Canada.

2018
Nobantu after-school facility

Education without Borders expands its programme to include the Nobantu After School facility in Mfuleni township, outside Cape Town, South Africa.

2019
Bellville South Primary School

Education without Borders creates an after-school programme at their fourth site in Bellville South Primary School in collaboration with the Building Bridges organisation.

EwB expands its South African Film Festival (SAFF) to Australia.

2020
Bellville South High School

Education without Borders expands to a fifth site - Bellville South High School and supports feeding programmes in Gugulethu, Mfuleni and Bellville South to provide relief for COVID - induced food shortages.

SAFF Canada and SAFF Australia convert their festival online in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

2021
Online learning and launch of virtual SAFF USA

In response to COVID-19 pandemic, EwB pivots some of its programmes to online, tablet-based learning.

EwB holds its first virtual South African Film Festival (SAFF) in the USA.

2022
Hybrid learning and PeerLab partnership

Education without Borders continues to offer hybrid learning programmes in South Africa, including tablet-based learning alongside small group tutorials.

EwB launches a new partnership with PeerLab Tutoring, where South African students receive virtual one-on-one homework assistance from tutors in the United States.