What does ‘Ithuba’ mean?

Ithuba is the Zulu word for chance and opportunity.


What are the Ithuba Community Colleges?

The ICC are two educational centres in South Africa.


Ithuba Community College Johannesburg (ICC JHB) was founded in 2008. It is situated in Katlehong, one of the largest township areas in South Africa. ICC JHB consists of a pre-school (grade R), a primary school (grade 1 – 7) and a skills centre for out-of-school youth.


Ithuba Wild Coast Community College (IWCCC) was founded in 2010. It is situated in Mzamba Mouth (Mbizana) in the province of the Eastern Cape. As part of the former Transkei, IWCCC’s catchment area consists of impoverished rural communities. IWCCC consists of a pre-school (grade R) and a primary school (grade 1 – 7). The introduction of a skills centre is planned.


Who is our target group?


ICC JHB and IWCCC cater for the children and youth of disadvantaged urban and rural communities in South Africa. We cooperate with the public education system at a provincial level, and aim at contributing to the quality of education in our respective catchment areas and beyond.


Our teaching philosophy is centred on the concepts of critical awareness and empowerment. At our schools, we offer extramural activities and aftercare in addition to the formal curriculum. At our skills centre, training content is developed in dialogue with participants, based on their interests and the needs of the community.


How do we teach vocational skills?


Vocational training at Ithuba is split into school and skills centre programmes, and developed in cooperation with the Austrian Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research (BMBWF). Initial vocational education and training (IVET) is taught in grades 5 - 7.


The program includes vocational and entrepreneurial content, and is realised through project-based learning. It aims at introducing learners to non-academic subjects and provides a medium for entrepreneurship education, in that learners develop products of value to others (e.g. wood products, vegetable seedlings, etc.).


The skills centre offers low-threshold vocational training in the fields of construction, woodwork, fashion design and ICT for out-of-school youth. In addition, ICC JHB offers a business incubator for graduates of the skills centre. Here, participants can build a foundation for their own businesses.


How are the buildings at Ithuba constructed?


Under the motto ‘build together, learn together,’ the construction of kindergartens, schools, and other educational and social facilities is realised in cooperation with faculties of architecture.


The principle: students of architecture plan buildings and construct them together with unemployed young people from surrounding communities. Throughout this process, community members are trained in building and construction while receiving an income. Further training in the field is offered at our Johannesburg skills centre.

Who is behind Ithuba?


The Austrian NGO/NPC s2arch stands for social, sustainable architecture and was founded in 2004 by Christoph Chorherr. It initiates social architecture projects through fundraising and bringing together faculties of architecture and beneficiaries. s2arch focuses on planning and building infrastructure for social and educational organisations that work in and with disadvantaged communities. In South Africa, s2arch operates through Ithuba Community Developments NPC.


How is Ithuba funded?


Our funding consists of donations from Europe and South Africa. In addition, we receive subsidies from the provincial education departments of Gauteng and the Eastern Cape. We are supported by experts from the Austrian Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research (BMBWF).


How can I support Ithuba financially?


Using the bank details below, donations to Ithuba can be transferred directly:



Account holder: S2Arch - Social and Sustainable Architecture

IBAN: AT91 2011 1283 4727 2900



Donations to Ithuba are tax deductible in Austria. In order to claim your donation for tax purposes, it is necessary to state your first and last names, as well as date of birth on the transfer. If you have any questions, please contact office@ithuba.org.


South Africa:

Account holder: ICD – Ithuba Community Developments

Account no. 62256936512

Branch code: 252605


How does the Austrian Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research (BMBWF) support Ithuba?


Its experts support Ithuba regarding educational and organisational development and quality. Ithuba’s vocational curriculum was developed by the BMBWF.


What contribution does Ithuba make on a systemic level?


In cooperation with the Austrian Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research (BMBWF), Ithuba aims at developing innovative, low-cost education programmes, some of which have been adopted by the public education sector.


Due to internal migration, the number of school learners in the Gauteng Province increases significantly every year. Ithuba supports the public education system by providing space for learners, thus taking pressure off surrounding schools.

if you have any further questions, please contact us at office@ithuba.org