Are you a Refugee, an Asylum Seeker, or a Migrant?

We provide the following Services:

Accommodation and food is given to new arrivals and those who have been in the Country for less than six months. Payment of rent arranged for vulnerable people (pending assessment).

School Fees & Uniforms

Payment of school fees (primary and secondary schools) and uniforms for refugee children whose parents have been in the Country for less than five years.

Support of Orphans

Support orphans whose foster parents have been appointed by the children’s court.

Free Language Courses

Free English and Zulu courses.

Food Parcels

Food parcels for the vulnerable people and those living with the HIV.


Clothing and Reading Glasses for poor and vulnerable people.


Free participation in the Healing Touch of Christ workshops.

Where will money for all this come from? Give a Donation or a Recurring Financial Dedication today.

What is our mission?

Our mission is to offer pastoral and social services to refugees, asylum seekers and migrants with a view to restore their lost dignity, faith and hope, by involving them in healing workshops and social cohesion programs and also ensure justice prevails in all matters affecting them.

Who is the Refugee Pastoral Care?

The Refugee Pastoral Care is the project of the Archdiocese Durban responsible for handling all matters affecting all foreign nationals in the area of the Archdiocese and beyond. The project was started in 1999 and gained momentum in 2002 when it was allocated a full time chaplain.

The pastoral role was and still is, fulfilled with our refugee brothers and sisters receiving counselling and masses said in their own languages. Services have been always offered indiscriminately.

The project has always been under the auspices of the Archdiocese of Durban. It was first administered by the Jesuits, and when they were no longer in a position to maintain a presence in Durban, the archdiocese approached the Spiritans for assistance in running the ministry.

The project is based at the Denis Hurley Centre at the Emmanuel Cathedral since that is the central point for the large population of Refugees living in Durban.

  • People who have passed through our doors

    22 000

  • Victims hosted durning the 2008 Xenophobic Attacks


  • Victims hosted durning the 2015 Xenophobic Attacks


Our Team

Fr Peter Lafferty CSSp
Fr Peter Lafferty CSSp
Refugee Pastoral Care chaplain of the Spiritans order who assists in running the ministry.
Makusha Hupenyu
Makusha Hupenyu
Coordinates and supervises all the daily works, programmes of different departments and supervises all the Refugee Pastoral Care programmes and, links the project with the Archdiocese and other organisation through the Chaplain.
Tito Luhengesa
Tito Luhengesa
Interpreter | Teacher | Counsellor
Interprets and translates interviews in the project and in various departments. Teaches English to new arrivals and also provides counselling to refugees and asylum seekers.
Ladislas Nduwayezu
Ladislas Nduwayezu
Bookkeeper | Orientator | Counsellor
The Refugee Pastoral Care bookkeeper and in charge of the inventory of the project’s stock. Orientates new arrivals to the shelter, to the department of Home Affairs and other departments. Provides counselling to refugees and asylum seekers.
Anna Maphumulo Nonhlahla
Anna Maphumulo Nonhlahla
Office Clerk | Teacher | Counsellor
Prepares office maintenance and teaches isiZulu to the new arrivals. Provides counselling to refugees and asylum seekers.
Emile Nkuzimana
Emile Nkuzimana
Tailor & Distributor of School Uniforms
Makes and distributes school uniforms to refugees and asylum seekers.


  • 2015 Xenophobic Attacks

    In 2015, another xenophobic attack happened resulting in 190 victims seeking protection from us. We housed them in a shelter for 54 days. They were provided with all basic necessities. A reintegration programme done and implemented with support from partner organisations.

    2015 Xenophobic Attacks
    Our Success Stories
  • 2008 Xenophobic Attacks

    In 2008, we hosted 580 victims of xenophobic attacks. We kept them in our facilities for over 4 months. During that period, the Refugee Pastoral Care provided all basic necessities for these people. A reintegration programme was drawn up and implemented successfully, without an incident.

    Trauma counselling and healing workshops were run with and for these victims. Support in the victims’ new and old places was given as an ongoing programme. Follow up workshops were done to bring stability spiritually and morally.

    On three occasions places where refugees were staying were gutted with fire, resulting in the destruction of property. The Refugee Pastoral Care assisted the fire victims with clothes, blankets, food and rentals.

    2008 Xenophobic Attacks
    Our Success Stories
  • Zulu & English Classes

    Integration is a primary issue for all who migrate into new places. Communication with indigenous people needs to be in their own languages. The Refugee Pastoral Care offers lessons in isiZulu which is the local language for the people in the area of the Archdiocese of Durban. English classes are given for employment purposes. The classes are offered for no payment to the refugees.

    Zulu & English Classes
    Our Success Stories
  • Healing Touch of Christ Workshops

    The Healing Touch of Christ Workshops is run in line with the catholic doctrines, however without discriminating against any other faith.

    The workshops came about as a result of a realisation that people, especially refugees go through traumatic experiences for which they do not get opportunities to talk about. Some people left their countries because of situations bedevilling them. Some have been involved in wars in which they lost their beloved ones, even their religion. Some might have been confronted with situations that were painful, tried to tell their stories but nobody bothered to listen. As people go through these instances where they do not receive attention, the pain builds up to enormous levels that causes unbearable stress. Some have even succumbed to the stress. However, it has been realised that the best way to deal with the feeling of pain is to talk about it in a religious atmosphere.

    The telling of stories, especially in a religious context removes the burden from the heart and with a “Touch of Christ” a healing process starts. If people cling to their pains and traumas then the burden of carrying other people’s sins becomes theirs through vengeance. So to free themselves from these burdens people need to talk about pain in this sense of forgiving those who have wronged them and peace building so that their hearts can receive relief in reconciliation. In a certain way the same could be said about perpetrators of any evil.

    Healing Touch of Christ Workshops
    Our Success Stories
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Where will money for all this come from? Give a Donation or a Recurring Financial Dedication today.


Where can we refer Refugees to?



helping only those who are UNHCR recognised refugees and asylum seekers with Section 22 permits


for repatriation


for grants and documentation of unaccompanied children


for documentation


for legal matters

Get in touch

Please contact us to find out more information about the Project and how make a Donation by filling out the form below: