Our Mission

Ons Missie

The FSA Youth Exchange (FSA = Friends of South Africa / Freundeskreis für Südafrika) organizes a student exchange between South Africa and Germany since 1996 with the following objectives:

To give the South African youth an affordable opportunity:

*          for exposure to the way of living and reasoning of a different culture;

*          to be young ambassadors for South Africa and

*          for personal growth and development.

Our History

Ons Geskiedenis

The FSA Youth Exchange was founded in 1996 by Lodie de Jager who was a German school teacher in the Free State from 1984.  The FSA has its roots in the tours and exchange visits he arranged for his students to Germany.  From 1991 – 1996 he was stationed in Germany from where he was responsible for the exchanges from and to South Africa.  He returned to South Africa in 1996 to found the FSA.  The FSA operates as a closed corporation.  

FSA Youth Exchange has two offices in South Africa. The office in Naboomspruit (Alta Botes) organizes the exchange for South African pupils to Germany. The office in Boksburg (Suzanne Baker) is responsible for the incoming German pupils and South African host families.

In Germany the FSA office is situated in Bielefeld.  The programme leader, Petra Jacobi, organizes the exchange for German pupils to South Africa, is responsible for the South African pupils during their stay in Germany and the host families in Germany.  Although working together, FSA in South Africa is an own juristic entity independent from FSA in Germany.

The FSA Youth Exchange in South Africa has three programmes to Germany and three programmes to South Africa.

To Germany

1.  Four weeks programme from June / July

3.  Eight weeks programme from November / January.

4.  Four weeks programme from December / January.


To South Africa

1.  Four / six weeks programme from July / August.  Four different date groups.

2.  Three month programme from July to end September.

3.  Four / six weeks programme from December / January.

4.  A few German students get permission from German schools to visit on individual dates for 3 or 6 months, April and Sept.

From December 1996 approximaely 5 000 learners from South Africa were selected to take part in the exchange programme and approximately the same number of German learners took part in the programme.

 Year Number of  SA Participants
 1996    55
 1997    97 
 1998  158
 1999  140
 2000  144 
 2001  196
 2002  265 
 2003  266
 2004  278 
 2005  308
 2006  285 
 2007  280
 2008  275
 2009  247 
 2010  206
 2011  220
 2012  233
 2013  197 
 2014  202

 2015  172

2016   186

2017   172

2018   167

2019    151