Thandekile Mbatha at the IFES/ SCO Prayer Hike on Lion’s Head, Cape Town

A group of Christian students from two Cape Town universities took to the mountain last week as youth movements gathered globally to pray for the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students (IFES) World Student Day on October 21 2016.

The IFES celebrated its 2016 World Student Day through prayer, Bible study and communal get-togethers held at various university campuses across the world. Its South African affiliate, the Students’ Christian Organisation (SCO) hosted a unique “prayer hike” to Cape Town’s Lion’s Head.

This is where students engaged in trail running and hiking in seek of an elevated prayer spot, amidst ongoing fee protests.

“With all campuses being shut down, we figured why not go pray on the mountain?! World Student Day is a significant day for us as a movement and we’re glad to have joined the world in this” said Nathan Theunis, SCO Cape Town branch chairperson.


Global and national prayer requests
Students present were from the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) and University of the Western Cape (UWC). Accompanied by a word of encouragement, the prayer hike catered for a number of global prayer requests, as circulated on the IFES website along with those made for universities across South Africa.

Samkelo Ndita, SCO Western Cape Higher Institution Section chairperson, at the SCO prayer hike.

“[The event] was great. I’ve learned a lot about IFES and the challenges that affect fellow Christians across the globe” said Ayakha Ngcoko from CPUT Bellville campus.

In 2019, SCO will host the 9th IFES World Assembly in Durban, Kwa-Zulu Natal. Preparations are also in place for the 2017 IFES English and Portuguese-speaking Africa Student Missions Conference to be held in Johannesburg late next year.

More about IFES
The IFES exists in 11 regional movements across 168 countries. It was founded in 1947 when leaders from 10 Christian student movements met at Harvard University in the United States. To date, IFES accommodates 500 000 to 600 000 students through minor movements in each respective country. For more information, visit or follow the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #ifeswsd for World Student Day and like on Facebook for updates on the World Assembly.

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