“Invest in women and you build a nation.”
Women across Africa are leading a new era in development. Despite being disproportionately impacted by a range of challenges, their creative initiatives are emerging as the most effective and sustainable solutions. African Women’s Development Fund USA℠ (AWDF USA℠) understands and supports women’s unique ability to overcome obstacles and develop their own communities, regions, and countries.
Who we are
AWDF USA℠ was created by the Ghana-based African Women’s Development Fund (AWDF), with a coalition of American women leaders, to spread awareness about the tremendous impact of African women-led organizations on communities across the continent.
We provide philanthropic advisory and management services, research, education, travel, and networking to build communities in the United States with an interest in African women’s leadership and development. In partnership with our sister organization, the award-winning African Women’s Development Fund in Ghana, our Mother Africa Program provides grants to outstanding women-led African organizations in the areas of:
- Women’s Rights and Leadership
- Economic Development
- Governance, Peace and Security
- Health and Wellness
- Arts and Culture
AWDF USA℠ is supported by a diverse client and donor base of individuals, corporations and international funders including Global Fund for Women, The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, David and Lucile Packard Foundation, the Firelight Foundation, and the Northwest Area Foundation among others.
We are led by some of the world’s most experienced African women’s development and philanthropy leaders. A new model for African development, we are proud of our accomplishments so far in partnership with AWDF. For example, together we have co-founded the Sirleaf Market Women’s Fund, which is rebuilding markets in post-war Liberia; created a global network of African/African diaspora women leaders; and funded over 800 African-women led nonprofits in 42 African countries with grants totaling $US19 million. You can learn more about our accomplishments here.
Core Values and Principles (The beliefs guiding our work)
- The fundamental personhood of African and African diaspora women and that their rights are inalienable, indivisible and an integral part of universal human rights
- Acknowledging, valuing and rewarding women’s paid and unpaid labor in society’s public and private spheres
- Solidarity, partnerships, networking, promoting young women’s leadership, and inter-generational transfer of knowledge
- Women’s power and leadership are essential for a successful society
- African and African diaspora women’s diversity as well as the benefit of working with people of all backgrounds
- The growth and long-term sustainability of organizations led and managed by women in a democratic, transparent and progressive manner
- The Pan-African Women’s Movement is part of a broader movement within and outside Africa, aimed at creating an enabling environment for good governance, social justice, equality and economic empowerment that counters the negative impacts of globalization
- Partnerships and alliances with men who are committed to the empowerment of women
- Our work is part of a Global Women’s Movement, which has produced significant advances for women and girls and is sustained by the voices, hands and work of women from all over the world
- Africa is the birthplace of all humanity; thus, we encourage and welcome Americans of all backgrounds to actively support the development of our shared Motherland
Vision (Why we exist)
AWDF USA℠’s long-term vision is for Pan-African women to live in a world in which there is social justice, equality, and respect for women’s rights.
Mission (How AWDF USA℠ works to promote its long-term vision)
AWDF USA℠ promotes increased public awareness, understanding, financial and other support in the United States for effective development initiatives and organizations led by African women.
Vision 2020 (The impact that AWDF USA℠ will have in the next ten years to advance our mission)
AWDF USA℠ will be recognized as the United States’ premier center for high impact African philanthropy and social investment.