New Bursaries Blog

People with Epilepsy tertiary level

History of the Trust

Statistics show that as a result of prejudice

people with epilepsy struggle to find

employment on the open labour market.  Having identified this problem, Epilepsy

South Africa, formerly known as SANEL, needed to find a way in which to rectify the

situation, and as a result the Mick Leary Educational Trust was established.

The Trust was named after Professor Mick Leary, a former Epilepsy South Africa

Chairperson, Paediatric Neurologist, and epilepsy expert. It was established in 1997,

and launched at Epilepsy South Africa’s AGM, to commemorate the organizations

30th Anniversary, an event that coincided with the retirement of Professor Leary from

his position as Epilepsy South Africa’s Chairperson. At the time Professor Leary

had been involved with Epilepsy South Africa for 27 of its 30 years

Several companies, including some of the large pharmaceutical companies and

manufacturers of anticonvulsant medications have made funds for bursaries


In 2009 the name of the Trust was changed to the Epilepsy South Africa Educational

Trust. Bursaries are given out at the start of each year, and details of how to apply are

included herein.

Aims of the Trust

· To enable people with epilepsy to study at tertiary level

· To empower people from marginalised and previously disadvantaged communities

· To create role models with epilepsy, to whom others with the condition can look to for advice and inspiration

· People with epilepsy are often denied bursaries on account of their condition. The trust aims to correct this and ensure that these people are able to graduate, and find themselves employable on the open labour market.

Who can apply?

· Application is open to any student who has epilepsy.

· Bursaries are available for study at any tertiary institution. Applicants are encouraged to pursue careers for which they have an aptitude, as well as ones that will enable them to find employment on completion of the course.

· In addition to having epilepsy, the trustees will also take into account factors such as the financial situation of the applicant or their parents, academic performance and community


What is expected from the Epilepsy SouthAfrica Bursar?

Epilepsy South Africa and the Trust hope to create a lasting relationship between the recipients of the bursary and themselves. Although recipients will not be required to pay back the bursary on completion of their studies, it would be expected that any persons receiving grants from the trust

involve themselves in the activities of Epilepsy South Africa. Bursars of the Trust are requested to do voluntary work for a minimum of one week per year at their closest Epilepsy South Africa branch. The Bursar should attend the Branch Annual General Meeting and if possible the national Annual General Meeting. Furthermore in an attempt to help facilitate the trusts aim of creating role models the trust might request that bursar have their stories published in Epinews (Epilepsy

South Africa’s national publication) or that they visit and advise more disabled people at Epilepsy South Africa residential homes or employment projects.


The Trust hopes to do more than simply pay for a person’s course of study. Instead it is hoped that special and lasting relationships can be developed between the Trust and the beneficiaries. Once the Bursar have qualified, and are working in their chosen fields, it is hoped that they will

South Africa and the Educational Trust - who will in turn be able to benefit the many less fortunate people with epilepsy, that will never be able to study.


How to apply

· Ask your local branch of Epilepsy South Africa for an application form.

· Contact Epilepsy South Africa National Office at (021) 447-3014 or via e-mail


· Complete the form below and post it to Epilepsy South Africa Educational Trust

c/o Epilepsy South Africa

PO Box 73



For further information about the Epilepsy South Africa Educational Trust, please call

our Epilepsy South Africa offices on any of the following numbers:-

National Office (021) 447 3014

Western Cape (021) 703 9420

South-Cape Karoo (044) 382 2155

KwaZulu Natal (033) 394 1041

Mpumalanga (013) 254 0161

Gauteng (011) 816 2040

Free State (056) 811 5959





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