Now recruiting for 2019 leadership program

The Ashinaga Africa Initiative began in 2014. Its mission is to contribute to Sub-Saharan Africa’s expanding role in global development through increasing access to higher education abroad. We support orphaned students who are committed to returning home and initiating change, by providing access to full financial support to study at a university abroad (equivalent to an undergraduate degree). Ashinaga support covers tuition, accommodation, travel costs, and other necessary fees.


Learn more about the Ashinaga Africa Initiative



Applicants must:

  • Have lost one or both parents;
  •  Have completed 12 years of education (primary and secondary school) within the last two years;
  • Were born after 1st October, 1996;
  • Have an outstanding academic performance at high school and were amongst the top students in their class;
  • Be willing to return home, or to Sub-Saharan Africa, and contribute to society in Sub-Saharan Africa after graduating from university;
    (See the full list of requirements here)

Required Documents

  • Completed application form
  • Working email address and telephone number
  • Document proving the death of one or both parents, such as a death certificate
  • Proof of age, such as a birth certificate, national ID or passport
  • Secondary school/high school graduation certificate
  • Results from final national exams
  • Academic report cards from the last two years of high school/secondary school
  • Passport-style photo of yourself


Applications are open between 16th September – 16th December 2018. Successful applicants will be invited to a second application round in late January which will be open between 28th January – 28th February 2019. This second round will include additional questions and essays to help us better understand your leadership potential and how you intend to use your university education to help others in the future. Successful applicants from the second round will be invited to an assessment day in April 2019 where Ashinaga conducts individual interviews and sets an examination to better understand students’ academic abilities and career goals in Sub-Saharan Africa. Students must bring all original academic documents and identification documents to the interview. Failure to do so may result in dismissal from the application process.

Eligible Countries

Anglophone Recruitment (September 16th to December 16th) (Applications now open)

Botswana, Ethiopia, The Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, Kingdom of eSwatini, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Mauritius, Namibia, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe

Francophone Recruitment (March to June) (Applications now closed)

Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Djibouti, Gabon, Guinea Conakry, Madagascar, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Republic of Congo, Senegal and Togo.

Lusophone Recruitment (July to September) (Applications now open)

Angola, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, and Mozambique

Click here for information about how to apply for the Lusophone Recruitment.

How to apply for the Anglophone Recruitment

There are three ways to apply for the Ashinaga Africa Initiative, although we prefer online applications or those sent by email. There is no application fee, and you must never pay anyone to apply or to apply on your behalf.

Please note that if you apply by post, all submitted documents will not be returned to you. Therefore, you must send copies of documents ONLY.

  Online Email Post
Step 1 Gather all the required documents, except for the application form. Download the application form here. Download the application form hereor ask for the form from your local Japanese embassy.
Step 2 Scan the required documents in either PDF or JPG format. Print the application form and fill it out. Print the application form and fill it out.
Step 3 Apply online (link) once applications open Scan the completed application form and the other required documents in either PDF or JPG format. Make photocopies of your completed application form and all other required documents
Step 4 Application complete Email your scanned documents to:
Use your name and country as the email title.
Send all photocopies to the following address:
Ashinaga Africa Initiative Recruitment Team P. O. Box 16864 – Kampala, UGANDA
Do not send original documents, copies only.
Step 5 Application complete Application complete

Application process

Step English French Portuguese  
Applications open September 16th, 2018 March 1st, 2018 6 July 2018
Applications close December 16th, 2018 June 30th 2018 30 September 2018
Second stage of application begins January 28th 2019 July-August 2018
Second stage of application ends February 28th, 2019 End of August 2018
Document screening March 2019 September 2018 October 2018
Final decision Late May 2019 End of September 2018 Mid-January 2019
Notification and acceptance Late May 2019 Early October 2018 End of February 2019
Preparation / Health check June 2019 October 2018 March 2019
Start of study camp Early July 2019 November 2018 May 2019

Application Form

Download the application form by clicking here.

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