Do you feel ready for something different?

Travel to the iconic city of Cape Town or one of the hotspots along the world famous Garden Route in South Africa. Take the chance to experience life as a local high school student for any period from 3 months to a year!

GROW Abroad offers programs run by a passionate and experienced team, giving foreign students an exciting yet safe opportunity to immerse themselves into the vibrant life we have in South Africa. 

Teenagers from 14 to 18 are welcomed into a warm South African family, attend a local school, and improve their English, while making lifelong friends along the way.

Aside from the adventures and good times students will find within the greater Cape Town and Garden Route, we also offer opportunities to tour further afield in our spectacular province.

Pillars of the Program

What could be more life changing than being able to perfect English language skills and make friends from other cultures whilst living in one of the most beautiful places in the world?


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GROW Abroad schools are typically based in middle class areas where it is very common to have students from varying and diverse cultural backgrounds.


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Students are placed with our carefully selected host families, who provide an instant local connection for warm support and friendship.



There is so much to do in this incredible location, with gorgeous beaches, magnificent parks, colourful markets and historical landmarks.


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Open your door to the world! Join our host family community and allow a student from abroad to experience a unique way of life.


From the famous Table Mountain to the ocean, with glorious forests in between, our programs stretch from Cape Town to Plettenberg Bay and it’s a cinch to take part in fantastic outdoor activities that students may not be able to do at home.

The region is desirable for its natural draw cards like penguins in Simon's Town, whales in Hermanus, the unique fynbos and access to the Atlantic and Indian oceans. The list of attractions goes on with Cape Point, the beautiful Knysna Lagoon and Heads, Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens and the great surfing beaches all along the coast.

Not forgetting historical spots like the World Heritage Site of Robben Island (also known as Madiba Island), where Nelson Mandela and other anti-apartheid activists were jailed.

What will you gain from the program?

Our mission is to provide a safe and exciting way for you as a student to have fun and to grow exponentially through your experiences. You have the potential and opportunities to develop in the following areas:



Increase self-confidence, learn to be flexible and problem-solving individuals through hands-on experience of a new education system, involvement in sporting structures and activities with peers with a different cultural viewpoint.
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Language Skills

Improve their use of the English language, and ability to communicate by forming friendships with people from a different background.
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Global Citizenship

Become an enthusiastic global citizen with a high level of tolerance and understanding about other ethnicities, races and creeds with the knowledge to interact with other people in a confident, yet sensitive manner.


Frequently Asked Questions

You need to be able to speak and understand English, as there may not be someone who understands your language in your host family or school. But you do not need to be fluent – one of the reasons you are coming is to improve your English and that’s what you will do while you are here!
Our programs are located in the Greater Cape Town, Hermanus and the Garden Route area. For certain programs only you can choose your specific area.
You may only choose a specific area with certain programs, for example if applying for a private school. GROW Abroad does take into account your preferences while looking for the best suitable host family and school for you.
You can choose to stay for one, two, three or four school terms. One term is approximately three months, so you can stay up till a full academic year in South Africa.
No. Each of our arrival and departure dates are fixed as they have been aligned to the start of the school terms, our orientation days and the date that the school terms end.
Yes you can go home early if you are really struggling and unhappy. However, we would like you to carefully consider such a decision as you may regret it if you make this decision too soon. Remember, it can take a few weeks to settle and adjust to your new environment. In addition, the GROW Abroad team will do everything they can to assist you in making your time in South Africa a success.
No they can’t visit while you are on the program. We allow parents and friends to visit you in the last month of your stay but we recommend these visits only take place after the end of your last school term, if your visa allows.
Yes you may certainly apply with a friend to join the same program. However, you will not be placed with the same host family.
GROW Abroad does not allow students to travel independently while on the program. You will be able to travel with the organized tours that we offer, or with your school or host family.
You will have access to explore sites in South Africa via the organized tours on offer via our tour operator. Surf and formal golf courses are also on offer via our accredited coaches. Our schools offer a range of sporting and cultural activities for you to get involved in. Most homestays are located in areas where a gym, volunteer group, and sports clubs are in close proximity. You will be provided with a list of activities that are considered too dangerous due to risk of injury and these activities are generally not covered by your insurance which therefore will restrict you from participating.
Host families and GROW Abroad coordinators work within strict safety procedures that ensure your safety at home, while being transported to and from school, during your tours and other activities.
Your host family is equipped to deal with most situations. You will be given a contact number to call which is available 24/7 should you need assistance. This will be provided after your arrival in South Africa.
You can contact us at and we will put you in touch with the agency in your country. They will take you through a screening and application process and inform you of costs and insurance. They will also inform you of the personal and academic requirements you need to meet in order to be eligible for the program.
Yes. Your agency will help you throughout your application process and will be available to support you until you complete your experience.
Host families come from all kinds of backgrounds. They may be a nuclear family with a mom, dad and children, they could be single parents, same sex parents or people without their own children who enjoy having children in their home. They are all carefully screened, interviewed and approved by GROW Abroad. You may be required to share a room with a host sibling or other exchange student who will be of a different nationality to you.
Your family will give you a warm, welcoming environment, a comfortable bed and a place to store your clothes and other belongings. They will provide three meals a day including a packed lunch for school. Your hosts will also provide transport to and from school. Many families have an internet connection or can help you get Wifi on your phone or laptop. Unless you have made your own plans, your family will include you in their weekend activities.
Yes - provided that the family lives close to one of our partner schools, have undergone our screening process and are prepared to subscribe to our program regulations. We do discourage students from being hosted by their relatives.
We offer a (optional) surf and golf program at an additional cost, exclusive to GROW Abroad students and their host siblings. We have partnered with a local tour operator which offers tours exclusive to GROW Abroad exchange students and their host siblings. These tours are a fantastic way to see more of South Africa, do fun activities and have a great time together with other students. Each quarter, we also host a get-together where you will have time to mingle with your fellow exchange students and GROW Abroad coordinators while doing a fun activity. Participating in our Care to GROW program is a wonderful way to gain exchange experiences, learn about South Africa and our culture(s) and meet locals too. It provides you the opportunity to get involved in volunteering projects – from assisting at animal shelters, child centers to local feeding schemes.