Our Mission

AU is a Human Rights and Youth Empowerment organisation that works with citizens, refugees, and migrants to prevent conflicts, enhance social cohesion and promote socio-economic development. 

Our Vision

We strive towards a united and prosperous Africa where all people live together harmoniously and peacefully.

Our Objectives

  1. Building united and prosperous communities where human rights are actively protected;
  2. Empowering and educating children and youth in schools toward leadership and community engagement;
  3. Teaching self-sufficiency and promoting socio-economic independence among disadvantaged communities;
  4. Ensuring the long-term sustainability of the organization.

Our Story

Following the end of apartheid and the establishment of a nonracial, democratic government in 1994, South Africa experienced a significant influx of immigrants. While most refugees and asylum seekers did find a safer environment and a better quality of life in this beautiful country, unfortunately, many also faced hardship and suffering. Conflict in communities between the migrants and the locals grew, crime rates rose, and discrimination was rampant.

Fueled by concerns over rising crime and xenophobia in their community, in 2001, youth from New Crossroads, Nyanga, Cape Town, came together to address these challenges. In response to the violence and discrimination they saw being perpetrated against asylum seekers, refugees, and migrants, they founded AU. 

With support from the Institute for Democracy in South Africa (IDASA), AU was officially launched in 2003 and became an autonomous organisation in 2004. We have since grown to provide support, education, and resources to help migrants both integrate into and build up their communities.

Our Approach

We implement our mission and realize our strategic objectives through multiple approaches.

Our programmatic focus centers on building the knowledge and skills of peer educators, facilitating reciprocal learning exchanges among citizens and foreign nationals, and creating platforms for intercultural dialogue in communities to address needs. We partner with like-minded organisations committed to building peaceful, sustainable communities through participatory strategies.

Specifically, we:

  • Implement educational and recreational programmes in partnership with local communities, organizations, and the South African government.
  • Commit to promoting and protecting human rights for all by leading by example and providing resources to the disadvantaged communities.
  • Design development-oriented projects with innovative responses to community needs.
  • Empower and educate participants to replicate efforts in the broader community and in different settings.