An unforgettable experience in South Africa

Isabella (LV) spent an unforgettable summer at Durban Girls’ College in South Africa as part of the Global Schools’ Exchange Programme.


15 August 2022

My name is Isabella and in the summer of 2022 I went all the way to Durban In South Africa.

My Downe House friends and I had two flights and though this was very daunting at first, it all seemed worthwhile as soon as we landed in Durban, where we were met by all our South African buddies who made us feel immediately welcome! It was nice to have two other girls flying with me as it gave me a sense of stability and I felt safe as I had never flown alone before.

The experience at DGC was amazing. It was so cool learning different things in a different country such as Afrikaans and Zulu.

We also went on a lot of trips with the school, such as to Makabongwe Methodist Pre-School where it felt like peace in the middle of the chaos and mayhem of the city. There we helped with sports lessons, teaching the children ball skills and general fun games. It was an eye-opening experience as we were exposed to the extreme poverty in the country and the problems which still exist. However, it was heart-warming to see how happy all the children were even though they have so little. It made us realise how privileged and lucky we are. This school really gives them the best possible start in life which is so important, and every child should be given this opportunity.

We also visited the Victoria Street Bead Market, and went on a Harbour and Sea Cruise and City Tour. I was extremely lucky as my host family also took me on a safari where I saw the ‘Big 5′ which was amazing and most definitely a breath-taking experience!

On our final day of school, as is DGC tradition, we did a uniform swap with our exchange girls. This meant for a day we got to wear their uniform which was so much fun. It really made us feel part of the school community and we all loved it!

As I hope you can see, our time on the Global Schools’ Exchange Programme was an unforgettable experience. It has made us more resilient, open minded and realise how lucky and privileged we are to live the way we do.

The support was impeccable. We never felt like we were on our own.
DH Parent (2022)

Find out more about the Global Schools’ Exchange Programme

Tours & Open Mornings

The best way to find out more about Downe House is to experience it for yourself. Book a personal tour or join us at one of our Open Mornings, available throughout the year.

A flexible and modern approach – Full Boarding | Flexi Boarding | Day Pupil – what’s your Downe House journey?
Back to top