Frequently asked questions about our programs


How much does it cost to ‘send a girl to school’?

Each year of education creates tremendous benefits for girls in rural Africa. The cost of providing a year of education varies from country to country and according to such factors as the student’s grade level and whether she can live at home or must attend a boarding school.

To provide a sense of the impact your donation will make, here are typical costs:

  • $15/£10 can provide a girl with essential supplies
  • $40/£30 provides a girl with a uniform
  • $150/£110 supports a girl through secondary (middle and high) school for a year. Her bursary (scholarship) package includes school fees, uniform, books, shoes, school supplies, sanitary supplies, and boarding expenses if required.


How are the girls who receive support selected?

Making sure that students are selected based upon need and using an open process is an important way we put our core principle of accountability into action.

Transparency is essential, so the selection of students for bursary (scholarship) support is carried out with intensive community consultation. Typically, an inclusive group that includes parents, teachers, students and community members (School Based Committees) identify the most financially disadvantaged children in their communities. These children are often orphans.

Their selection is double-checked by members of a separate, district level group, (CAMFED initiated Community Development Committees) who typically visit each family or care provider of selected students to verify their need. CAMFED’s selection process has been commended by independent evaluators and by the governments of countries in which we work.


Do you invest in boys’ education as well?

Although our programs are directed primarily at reducing the gap between girls and boys in their school enrolment and their completion of primary and secondary school, many of our programs reach boys.

At the primary school level, where families do not pay school fees, CAMFED’s Safety Net Fund program benefits both boys and girls. Grants are given to school committees who can use them to help children remain in school by providing them with shoes, uniforms, books or food. Our grants can also be used for learning resources, such as text books that benefit entire classes and schools.

Our secondary school bursary program primarily targets girls, but in some countries and districts we do provide scholarships to boys when they are among the most vulnerable. All children attending CAMFED partner schools benefit from CAMFED’s training and support of teachers, school staff and education authorities. Beyond our partners schools, thousands more children are benefiting from CAMFED’s practical advocacy for child protection laws and guidelines.


In which countries does CAMFED operate?

CAMFED operates in Ghana, Malawi, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.


Does CAMFED have plans to expand to other countries?

Expansion of CAMFEDs programming is dependent on a number of factors. We begin our work with an invitation from a country’s national government. Then we establish reciprocal partnerships backed by a Memorandum of Understanding.

Decisions about where to work within a country are based upon the recommendations of national and district government officials, taking into consideration data that reveals where school enrollment rates, particularly for girls, are low and poverty levels are most acute. Our latest strategic plan will include any plans for geographical expansion.


If you have any questions not answered here please email [email protected]

Other pages of interest


Ways to give

Whether you make a donation, take part in an event or fundraise with friends, there are lots of ways to take action for girls’ education in Africa. 


Who we are

Find out what makes CAMFED different, who we are, and what our principles and values are. 

Thank you to our generous recent donors

Together we are breaking the cycle of poverty


Alashiya Gordes €20

Vicky Etherington £30

Sebastien Bonvalet-Nicolle $200

Andrew Shields £100

Rabbi Jonathan Gerard $10

Rosemary Snelgar £10

Marcel Bollag $500

Claire Wilshaw £100

Joanna Panosky $500

Nicole Distler €25

Gilbert and Carol Kachmar $50

Aku Limbanga $50

Alastair Reid £100

Cathy Eijk €11

Fred Andrle $100