World University Service of Canada: University of Saskatchewan Local Committee

Student Refugee Program

A SRP Student learning to skate.
Learning to skate and having fun.

In some developing countries, getting an education can be dangerous. Whether due to war or political repression, students are often persecuted, imprisoned or forced into exile. Since 1978, WUSC's Student Refugee Program (SRP) has enabled over 850 student refugees from countries such as Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Uganda, Zaire, Mozambique, Sri Lanka, Somalia, Rwanda and Burma to continue their studies at Canadian universities and colleges.

WUSC ensures the success of the program by facilitating the overseas selection of the refugee student in cooperation with international agencies and the Canadian government, placing them at a Canadian post-secondary institution, and providing training and guidance to the sponsoring groups.

The only program of its kind in Canada, the SRP enables individual refugees to pursue their education and a better life in an environment free of violence or fear. At the same time it offers students and faculty on Canadian campuses a unique opportunity to learn first-hand about refugee and development issues.

Local SRP Committee

The Local Committee receives $3.50 per full-time undergraduate student per term to sponsor up to three student refugees to attend our campus. This sponsorship commences with new students every August and lasts for one year.

Local WUSC members volunteer their time to help orient these new students to life in Canada, and life on the U of S campus. Our Local Committee has tons of fun introducing sponsored students to many uniquely Canadian experiences and just as much fun learning about their life before Canada. In addition, local members gain first-hand knowledge about refugee experiences and human rights, acquire hands-on skills in organizing, fundraising and advocacy; peace and conflict issues and humanitarian affairs; cross-cultural communications; and civic participation and public engagement.

The SRP provides leadership opportunities for highly motivated, socially responsible young people on campus, and promotes Canadian values of multiculturalism, diversity and respect. Refugee students bring new perspectives to campuses and students. The SRP enables post-secondary institutions to achieve several educational, cultural and humanitarian goals, which include promoting diversity, increasing internationalization, and expressing solidarity for academic freedom.