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Why has NSFAS chosen to work with Thusong Centres for the 2024 Application Cycle




  • Thusong Service Centres are one-stop, integrated community development centres, with community participation and services relevant to people’s needs. They aim to empower the poor and disadvantaged through access to information, services and resources from government, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), parastatals, business, etc. enabling them to engage in government programmes for the improvement of their lives.

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  • I no longer remember or use the email and cell number I registered with; how can I retrieve my OTP?

  • Go to and click on myNSFAS accountEnter your username and passwordClick on the My personal details tabEnter your current cell phone number and email addressClick Update your detailsA One Time Pin (OTP) will be sent to the new cell phone number and email address that you have providedEnter the OTP and click submitYour details will immediately be updated

    When will application results be communicated?

    Application results will be communicated to all applicants once NSFAS received confirmation from the Institution that an academic offer has been made to you. This will be communicated to you before the start of the academic year via SMS, email and through your myNSFAS account.

    I am a parent/guardian, unemployed, was not retrenched, what proof may I submit for the application?

    An affidavit will be accepted; however, your employment status will be verified through government entities and 3rd party agencies.

    Do I need to apply for 2021 funding or each semester and trimester if I am currently approved?

    No, if you are currently funded by NSFAS, you are not required to reapply.

    What supporting documents are required when I apply?

    All applicants are required to submit: Certified copy of your ID, not older than 3 months A signed and completed consent form. If you are dependent on your parents/guardian/spouse, please provide: Certified ID copies of parent/s, guardian, spouse not older than 3 months Proof of income of parent, guardian or spouse (payslip or appointment letter If you are self-sufficient (no parent/guardian support) please provide: Proof of income (payslip or appointment letter). If you have a disability, please provide: Completed and signed Annexure A (if your information is not pre-populated on the portal). If you are an orphan, please provide: Completed and signed Declaration Form, Other documents required, if applicable: Retrenchment letter / UIF documentation; Death certificate/s; Divorce decree.

    My parents/ guardian is an informal trader selling fruit, what proof of income should I upload?

    An affidavit by your parent/guardian will be required as proof. Your parents/guardian income will be verified by 3rd party agencies.

    I already have a bursary from another organisation that covers part of my studies, can I apply for NSFAS to cover the balance of funds needed?

    Students on a full NSFAS bursary may not receive another full cost of study bursary from another source at the same time. If a student receives a partial bursary from another source, a NSFAS bursary may be awarded, but the allocations must be reduced accordingly, so that the student is supported fully for their studies. NSFAS may not pay for amounts already covered by another funder. Any excess funding must be refunded to NSFAS by the Institution. A student may not receive funding in excess of the DHET National Rules and guidelines.

    Why has NSFAS chosen to work with Teacher Centres?

    These are physical sites located within the districts which are easily accessible to all teachers from schools in the district. From these District Teacher Development Centres (DTDCs) curriculum support staff can operate, teachers can access resources, Continued Professional Teaching Development (CPTD) courses are delivered and teacher Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) can meet. Vodacom and UNISA partner with the DBE in to develop the Information & Communication Technology (ICT) skills of teachers and have equipped the majority of the 147 DTDCs with ICT resources and internet connectivity. This makes the DTDCs hubs of digital teaching and learning which also offer services to learners in the district and members of the community in which they are based. A list of participating Teachers Centres is attached. All learners who wish to utilize such services, must make an appointment with the Centre manager.

    I am not receiving the One Time Pin (OTP), how do I access it?

    You can click the option to resend a One Time Pin (OTP) for another one to be sent to you.

    I am still studying- am I required to start paying my NSFAS loan?

    Did you know that repayment of your study loan is only due once you have secured employment? If you received a study loan in 2017 and prior, an interest holiday of 12 months post exit date is applicable to student loan accounts.

    Does the NSFAS funding cover short courses at universities?

    No. NSFAS funding covers approved funded programmes at universities which are all undergraduate whole qualifications i.e. degree and diploma.

    I am an orphan (vulnerable child), how/where do I get hold of a social worker?

    You may speak to a Life Orientation educator or principal to direct you to your nearest Department of Social Development with the area.

    What are the NSFAS bursary academic requirements?

    You need to have passed Grade 9 to 12 to receive NSFAS funding to study at a TVET college and Grade 12 to receive funding to study at a university or TVET college. If you are approved for NSFAS funding, you will be required to meet the academic admission requirements of the university or TVET college before NSFAS allocates any funding to you.

    Can I apply for NSFAS if I was funded previously?

    Yes, you may apply for funding. You will be required to apply during the application period. Please note that if you have been registered prior to 2018 your combined household income must not exceed R122 000 per annum. If you were registered in or after 2018 for the first time your combined household income must not exceed R350 00 per annum.

    Where is the nearest centre to apply?

    Visit to find an application centre closest to you.

    Can students with disabilities apply for funding?

    Yes. Students with disabilities are encouraged to apply for financial assistance. NSFAS provides special disability funding to all approved students with disabilities at any of the 26 public universities or 50 TVET colleges. The applicant’s household income must not exceed R600 000 per year.

    I have not received any funding decision for my 2020 funding application

    Check your application status by logging into your myNSFAS account and track your application progess. The page will advise on what stage your application is.

    I only have a cellphone number and no email address; how do I proceed with the application?

    To create an email account is easy and free. Please create an email address through Gmail, Yahoo, Webmail or any other free email service provider to ensure you receive relevant communication from NSFAS.

    Can I apply for NSFAS if I have already studying without the NSFAS funding or with other sponsor?

    Yes, you may apply if you are a South African citizen studying at a public university or TVET college. If you have been registered and started studying before 2018, your combined household income must not be more than R122 000 per annum for you to qualify. However, if you were registered in or after 2018 for the first time, your combined household income must not be more than R350 000 per year.

    In terms of semester students, does NSFAS fund them and what is the process?

    NSFAS funds a student for the duration of studies therefore NSFAS does not require the student to apply every semester or year. When a student is approved for funding it is for the whole academic year, and subsequent years after, provided that the student meets the academic progression requirements.

    How do I create a myNSFAS account?

    • Log onto and click on the myNSFAS tab.Click on register. Tick on the acceptance option to allow NSFAS to verify and validate the information you provided.Type in your ID number as it appears on your ID document.Type in your name and surname as they appear on your ID Document.Type in your email address and cellphone number. Your username will be your email address.Create a password and confirm your password.Upload a copy of your ID.Click on register.After clicking register, a One Time Pin (OTP) will be sent to the email address and cellphone number you provided.Check your cellphone and email for the OTP.Type in the OTP in the tab provided and click submit.You will then receive another SMS and email confirming that your myNSFAS account has been created. You may now continue with your application.

    I applied for 2020 NSFAS funding, I have an application reference number but never received feedback.

    Check your application status by logging into your myNSFAS account and track your application. If you do not have a myNSFAS account, visit for the steps on how to create your myNSFAS account.

    If my parent/guardian is a taxi driver, what proof of income should I upload?

    You will be required to submit a letter of employment indicating your parent/guardian’s income.

    If a student had previously been rejected by NSFAS due to lack of funds, is it now guaranteed that they will be awarded funding?

    All eligible students who fall within the R350 000 household income bracket, and have been admitted at universities and TVET colleges, will be funded.

    What if I don’t have a cell phone?

    To apply online, you will need a functioning cellphone, a valid cellphone number and your own email address. If you don’t have a cellphone, you may use the cellphone of a trusted guardian or relative, but it is best to have your own cellphone device and number. No two applicants may use the same cell phone number or email address. This information is needed to create a myNSFAS account which you will use to apply for funding.

    How to update your contact details?

    To update your cellphone number or email address, log on to your myNSFAS account using your Username (email address) and password. Once you have logged in click Personal Details on the top of your screen. You will then be able to update your cellphone number and email address.

    Which institutions does NSFAS provide funding for?

    NSFAS will only provide financial assistance to eligible students who have applied and have been accepted at public universities and TVET colleges for an approved funded programme. We do not provide funding if you will be studying or already studying at a private institution.

    What does NSFAS funding cover?

    The cost covered can include tuition, registration and allowances based on each student’s study circumstance. NSFAS provides funding to all approved students to cover the cost of tuition and registration. NSFAS funded students who wish to study at a university will receive additional allowances to cover the cost of books, transport, accommodation, food and personal care. NSFAS funded students who wish to study at a TVET college will receive additional allowances to cover the cost of transport, accommodation inclusive of meals and personal care. NSFAS funded students with disability, receive the funding according to the TVET and university allowance list; inclusive of supporting devices such as wheelchairs, special computer devices and human support depending on the student’s needs.

    What happens if you are declined for a NSFAS bursary?

    If an applicant is not satisfied with the results of their applications, they can appeal this decision by completing the appeal process either available through their myNSFAS account for first time entering students or at the institutions financial aid for continuing students for continuing or senior students.

    I plan to study for two qualifications at two institutions at the same time

    A student can only be funded for one qualification at one institution at any one time. If the student completed a N6 qualification at a TVET college, he/she may be funded at a university. Once your N6 is complete you will need to apply for funding for university.

    I studied at a TVET college during 2020 but want to study for a university qualification in 2021

    Yes, to be funded for the university qualification in 2021, you need to have passed and completed your 2020 TVET qualification. You need to ensure that you apply at the university for a NSFAS funded course, once you have been admitted at the university, the university will send us a registration details that will confirm your registration, we will then change your funding from TVET to university.

    Does NSFAS pay registration costs for first year and returning students?

    Yes. Registration costs are usually the first payment made towards your tuition costs, and if you have been confirmed for funding by NSFAS, universities and TVET colleges will not expect you to pay the registration fees upfront.

    I have already completed a university qualification but would like to enroll for a second one

    Students who have already obtained a prior university qualification do not qualify and should not apply for funding. Students who have completed TVET N6 qualifications cannot be funded at a TVET college again but can be funded at university.

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How Long Does It Take to Claim VAT Back?




How Long Does It Take to Claim VAT Back?

Claiming a Value Added Tax refund in South Africa can be a complex process with varying timelines depending on your circumstances. VAT is a consumption tax paid on goods and services, and tourists and certain vendors can apply for VAT refunds. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the time frames for claiming VAT refunds, how to check the status of your refund, what happens when you claim VAT back, and the steps to claim VAT back in South Africa.

How Long Does It Take to Claim VAT Back

The time it takes to claim a VAT refund in South Africa can differ based on your eligibility and the refund amount. Here are some general timelines:

Tourists and Foreign Enterprises

Tourists and foreign enterprises can claim VAT refunds on goods they take out of the country when the total value exceeds R250. Exported goods should ideally leave within 90 days from the tax invoice date, barring a few exceptions noted in Part One of the Export Regulations. While refund processing durations can fluctuate, adherence to the correct protocols and thorough documentation significantly streamline the refund process.


Vendors can claim back VAT on specific business-related expenses, enhancing their financial flexibility. SARS aims to pay VAT refunds to vendors within 21 business days of receiving the correctly completed VAT return. However, the actual processing time might vary based on factors like the accuracy and completeness of your submission.

Refund Amount

Refunds for different amounts might have different processing times. Generally, VAT refunds for claims less than R3,000.00 are loaded onto the VAT Refund Card within 3-4 weeks of the claimant’s departure date. Larger refunds may take longer, and ensuring all documentation is crucial to avoid delays.

Claim Approval

The endorsement of VAT refund claims significantly influences the processing duration. After SARS approves your claim, anticipate a refund timeline of about 3 months. Their approval process typically entails a thorough review of your records and adherence to tax guidelines.

How Do I Check My South African Tax Refund Status?

Checking the status of your tax refund in South Africa, including VAT refunds, can be done through the SARS eFiling system. Check how:

  1. SARS eFiling
    • Visit the main SARS eFiling online portal.
    • Use your credentials/particulars to sign in to your SARS account.
    • Visit the “Returns” site section.
    • Pick the “Income Tax” page or the “VAT” section, depending on your expected refund.
    • Check the “Refund” page for the refund status display.
    • You’ll check the payment date after the refund processing step.
  2. Contact SARS
    You can contact SARS directly if you can’t access your eFiling account or have questions about your refund. SARS has various contact channels, including phone and email, to assist taxpayers with their queries.

What Happens When You Claim Back VAT?

When you claim back VAT in South Africa, several key steps and processes come into play:

  • Submission

You must submit a correctly completed VAT return to claim a VAT refund. This return should detail your eligible expenses and purchases for which you’re seeking a refund.

  • Review and Approval

SARS reviews the submitted documentation to ensure compliance with tax regulations. This stage could entail confirming the validity and precision of the data submitted.

  • Processing

Once your request is endorsed, the reimbursement is initiated. As previously mentioned, the timeframe for processing may differ based on the sum, your qualifications, and additional considerations.

  • Payment

If your claim is successful, SARS will arrange for a refund payment. The payment method can vary, but refunds are often loaded onto a VAT Refund Card for easy access.

  • Documentation and Compliance

Maintaining proper documentation and ensuring compliance with tax regulations is crucial to facilitate a smooth refund process.

  • Communication

SARS may communicate with you during the process if they require additional information or have questions about your claim.

How Do I Claim South Africa VAT Back?

To claim VAT back in South Africa, you need to follow specific steps:

  1. Eligibility: Ensure that you meet the eligibility criteria. Tourists, foreign enterprises, and certain vendors can claim VAT refunds.
  2. Documentation: Keep detailed records of your eligible expenses and purchases. This includes tax invoices and receipts.
  3. Submission: Complete the VAT return form accurately. For tourists and foreign enterprises, ensure that your goods are exported within 90 days from the tax invoice date.
  4. Submit the Claim: Submit your VAT refund claim to SARS. This can often be done through the eFiling system.
  5. Wait for Approval: After submission, wait for SARS to review and approve your claim. This can be a time-consuming step, as previously indicated.
  6. Receive Reimbursement: Upon approval, you’ll receive your refund, which can be loaded onto a Value Added Tariff Refund Card or disbursed via alternative methods.
  7. Adherence to Regulations: Ensuring compliance with tax regulations is critical at every stage. Maintaining meticulous records and adhering to the established guidelines is essential.
  8. Seek Assistance: Should you require guidance or have inquiries about your claim, don’t hesitate to dial SARS for support.

In conclusion, the duration for reclaiming VAT in South Africa can vary based on several factors, including your eligibility, the refund amount, and the validation process. To facilitate a seamless refund process to adhere to the correct protocols, maintain accurate documentation, and uphold tax compliance.

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NSFAS Portal: Login|Create Account or Reset Password




NSFAS Portal: Login

The National Student Financial Aid Scheme, or NSFAS, is an allowance for undergrad South African students. The Department of Higher Education and Training funds this bursary scheme. This scheme is given to financially weak students who want higher education but cannot afford it.

NSFAS will be allotting around R47.6 for the academic year 2023. This money will help cover students’ tuition and registration fees, transport and accommodation fees, and personal care costs. Here is a guide on NSFAS allowances.

Those students with South African citizenship can apply, and their total and complete household income is less than R350000 or living with a disability, and their income is less than R600000

Students will have to return the money to NSFAS. NSFAS only lets you borrow the money if you sign on to the money-returning policy. You must start paying them back after employment or starting your own business.

How to Create myNSFAS Student Portal Account?

If you need this allowance, you will have to apply for it. To apply for an NSFAS allowance, you must have your myNSFAS Account.

NSFAS is the Organization while myNSFAS is the student portal provided by that organization.

If you are finding it hard to make your myNSFAS Account, then you are at the right place because I will be sharing the whole process step by step.

  • First, you will have to open NSFAS official website which is
  • Next, you must click on ‘myNSFAS,’ which will appear on the top right corner of the page. Now select ‘create an account.’
  • Then, it will ask for your personal details. Please fill them out carefully; they must match your identity document (ID).
  • Then, fill in your contact details. Note that you must fill it in correctly because NSFAS will have to contact you through the information you provide.
  • Then, you will see the terms and conditions. Read them, then accept them by ticking the box. Note that if you do not agree to the terms and conditions, NSFAS will not be able to proceed with your selection.
  • Then, you must create a unique password and confirm it. Do not share your password with anyone to avoid scammers reaching your funds.
  • Finally, click on the ‘create’ tab. Your account creation is done. Make sure to remember your details, and if some changes occur in your information, revisit the link and make all the changes accordingly.

How to Log in to myNSFAS Account?

Once you make your NSFAS account, you will have to log in to it. You can see all the information on your Account and track your application through your Account. Here is how you can log in.

  • First of all, visit
  • Next, you will see a myNSFAS tab; click on it.
  • Then, enter your username and password in the given boxes.
  • In the end, click on ‘sign in.’

How to Reset myNSFAS Account Password?

Your NSFAS account is of crucial importance while applying for an NSFAS scholarship. You will need your Account at every step. So, you must keep your login credentials very safe, but if you cannot remember your password, here is how you can reset it.

  • First, visit ‘The NSFAS student portal.’
  • Next, you will see ‘forgot your password? Click here’ tab. Click on it to restore your password.
  • Then, you will have to enter your ID.
  • Then, click on ‘I can’t remember my password.’
  • Then, press the ‘submit’ tab.
  • You will get an OTP pin on your mobile number or email address.
  • Finally, enter that pin in the given box and click ‘create password.’ This time think of something that you can remember.

The National Student Financial Aid Scheme, or NSFAS, has created the NSFAS student portal, making it easy for students to contact them. Students can easily create their accounts and apply for the allowance. While, Celbux system makes it even easier to distribute and manage the bursary funds and enables easy access to students.

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What Is A Vulnerable Child Declaration for NSFAS?




NSFAS Vulnerable Child Declaration Form, has been introduced to identify eligible students who require additional support due to their vulnerable circumstances

As part of your NSFAS application process, you may be asked to provide a Vulnerable Child or Non-SASSA Declaration Form. Many applicants find these a very intimidating form to create, and the titles can be confusing if you are not used to bureaucratic systems. Luckily, you have us to help! Today we have rounded up everything you need to know about these types of forms and how to ensure they are filled in correctly so your application process is as smooth as possible.

What Is a Vulnerable Child, Or Non-SASSA Declaration Form?

While the title of both forms is rather odd to look at, a Vulnerable Child or Non-SASSA Declaration Form is simply a document used to identify and verify the vulnerable status of a student, or someone who is not receiving any form of social grant through the South African Social Security Agency, better known as SASSA. You will typically be asked to provide a Vulnerable Child or Non-SASSA Declaration Form when you are applying for specific financial aid programs, including NSFAS for tertiary education.

The forms are intended to help interested parties gather information about the applicant’s circumstances. Sadly, the level of financial need in South Africa is so great that potential NSFAS students will often try to hide or obscure the real facts about their parents and other funding they receive in order to access financial assistance. Plus, of course, there are always scammers trying to exploit government programs for their own gain, which takes funding away from the truly needy. These declaration forms help to assess the financial need and vulnerability of the student, and help ensure that they receive appropriate assistance and support as much as possible without abusing the program. They are also used where the applicant provides details that do not match with SASSA’s records.

While providing a Vulnerable Child or Non-SASSA Declaration Form is a common part of applying for such financial assistance, the exact format and details needed can vary depending on the organization which has requested it. So don’t be afraid to ask for clarification on what exactly they expect! Today we are focusing specifically on the NSFAS version of these forms, but the information should help you with other applications too. You can download both forms from the SASSA website.

Who Signs The Vulnerable Child Declaration Form?

The Vulnerable Child Declaration Form will need to be signed by the applying student, alongside any guardian figure or registered social worker they have in their life (in the case of child-led households without a guardian). This form is commonly used by NSFAS where a student claims not to have family details or access to their abridged birth certificate or where they say they are an orphan.

How To Fill In Non SASSA Declaration Form?

You can download the Non SASSA Declaration Form directly from NSFAS here. It is a very intuitive form to fill in, so simply work through each section and provide the details you are asked for.

It is important to complete the declaration form accurately and honestly, providing all the necessary information and supporting documents requested by NSFAS. This will help ensure that your application is processed correctly and that you receive the appropriate financial aid based on your circumstances.

Why Does NSFAS Want a Declaration Form?

NSFAS will request a declaration form when it needs to gather additional information about an applicant’s circumstances and to further verify their eligibility for financial aid. A declaration form helps NSFAS assess the financial need and vulnerability of the applicant accurately by gathering additional information, often from sources outside the family. Here are a few occasions where NSFAS may ask you for a declaration form:

  • A declaration form giving information about any specific vulnerabilities or challenges that the applicant and their household face is very common. This addresses disabilities and health issues, whether the person is an orphan, what family responsibilities they carry, and other difficulties they face in life. 
  • A declaration form may be needed to verify the personal details of the applicant, such as their name, contact information, and identification details. It may also include information about the applicant’s household members, such as their relationship, income, and who depends on whom
  • Declaration forms regarding financial situations are also common, checking that the applicant meets the eligibility criteria for financial aid and confirming how financially needy they are. 
  • Last, but not least, NSFAS may use a declaration form to ensure compliance with its regulations and policies, to avoid fraud and assist them in ensuring only the truly needy and those who genuinely qualify for assistance can access the fund.

We hope you now have a much stronger idea of when a declaration form may be requested by NSFAS, how to find the right form, and how to fill it in. Remember that honesty is always the best policy, and that the information you provide will be rigorously assessed by NSFAS, so it is important not to lie or obfuscate your circumstances.

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