South Africa

WONDER helps girls receive quality skills training and mentorship in South Africa.

National Summary

In South Africa, a notable challenge is the presence of education inequality among women. Analysing trends in the percentage of young adults in education and not in employment nor education or training (NEET), gender, age group, and work status reveal disparities. In 2019, 41% of men aged 18-24 were in education, compared to 42% of women in the same age group. Of those not in education, 18% of men were employed, while 41.1% were NEET; for women, 12% were employed and 46.5% were NEET. Despite the similar number of individuals in education aged 18-24 for both genders, men were more likely to be employed, while women were more likely to be NEET. 

Female unemployment rates, reflected in QLFS Q1: 2021 figures by Stats SA, remained higher than their male counterparts, with rates of 34% and 31.4% respectively. Of these, black South African women were the most vulnerable, facing an unemployment rate of 38.3%. Furthermore, more women (56.2%) than men tended to be discouraged from participating in the labour market. Notably, women were more likely to cite “family commitment” as a reason for not attending school compared to men (17.1% vs. 0.3%). 

Additionally, gender-based violence poses a significant societal challenge in South Africa. Whilst most people do not justify wife beating according to the Governance, Public Safety, and Justice Survey (GPSJS), there are still individuals who consider it justifiable under certain circumstances. 





Quick Facts

60.4 million total population

18.2 million living in extreme poverty

18.3 million of working age are not in education or employment


Featured partners and projects

We currently work with 27 women-led local partners globally who have a proven track record of helping communities through education.
We rely on their expertise to respond to local needs and solutions in order to establish sustainable long-term projects.


FPTI provides business skills and vocational training courses in hospitality to young women with fewer opportunities in the Philippines.

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ISSI provides vocational training in the healthcare sector, equipping students to become nurses and midwives in DRC.

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