Africa

AJWS supports activists on the frontlines of social change in five countries in Africa. From galvanizing a youth movement for democracy in Senegal to fighting laws that oppress LGBTQI+ people in Kenya to securing indigenous communities' land right sin Liberia - AJWS grantees work tirelessly to build just societies around the continent.

Meet AJWS Grantees in Africa

Meet the inspiring grantees of AJWS in Africa! These incredible individuals and organizations are working tirelessly to promote human rights, empower marginalized communities and build a better future for all.

Our Work Across the Region

Democratic Republic of Congo

In the Democratic Republic of Congo, AJWS supports social movements led by bold, young leaders fighting for democracy and peace. The DRC has been engulfed by corruption and conflict for decades — and while activists have made strides to build a safer and democratic country for all its citizens in recent years, violence, corruption and fraud still loom large. These issues have sparked national and regional youth movements across the country calling for greater government accountability and transparency. AJWS’s grantees in the DRC work to boost civic engagement and political awareness and advocate for transparent, free and fair elections.

AJWS also supports activists protecting rural communities’ land, water and resource rights, as many of the conflicts in the DRC have been exacerbated by disputes over natural resources. Large-scale, government sanctioned, industrial development projects — like the expansion of the Grand Inga dams — have displaced thousands of rural and Indigenous villagers, who have no access to the energy the dams produce. AJWS partners work to mobilize local people to take action, demanding their rights and access to clean energy.

Focus Issues:


Civil and Political Rights, Land, Water and Climate Justice



Grantees:


6



Funded by AJWS since:


2022

Focus Issues:


Civil and Political Rights, Land, Water and Climate Justice



Grantees:


6



Funded by AJWS since:


2022

Kenya

In Kenya, AJWS supports activists defending the land, water and other natural resources that sustain rural and Indigenous communities. Our partners have created a coalition of activists fighting the LAPSSET Corridor, a massive network of coal mines, ports, highways and oil pipelines that has threatened the lives and livelihoods of communities across the country. AJWS also supports Indigenous communities collaborating to defend their right to live in and protect their ancestral forest lands—efforts that are crucial in mitigating the worst impacts of climate change. And as the climate crisis continues to worsen droughts and food shortages, AJWS partners help communities adapt, innovate and survive.

Kenya severely restricts reproductive health services, criminalizes same sex relationships, and guarantees no legal protections for sex workers. In response, AJWS supports community-led initiatives to champion sexual health and rights and help people access reproductive services, end violence and discrimination, and expand what’s possible for Kenyan women, girls, LGBTQI+ people and sex workers. As these communities are regularly abused by police, our partners provide legal aid, fight discriminatory laws, break down stigmas and create safe spaces where all Kenyans can enjoy basic human rights and be fully themselves.

Focus Issues:


Humanitarian Response, Land, Water and Climate Justice, Sexual Health and Rights



Grantees:


47



Funded by AJWS since:


1999

Focus Issues:


Humanitarian Response, Land, Water and Climate Justice, Sexual Health and Rights



Grantees:


47



Funded by AJWS since:


1999

Liberia

In Liberia, years of persistent patriarchal values and religion have given rise to archaic laws that segregate and discriminate against LGBTQI+ people and sex workers. Consensual same-sex relationships are criminalized in the country, and these communities face widespread violence and limited access to health services. When crises like Ebola outbreaks strike, these minorities are the first to be blamed. To defend their rights, AJWS supports our partners to grow grassroots movements, conduct legal advocacy, and engage law enforcement to ensure their safety.

Additionally, AJWS supports rural and Indigenous communities to resist the rampant expansion of palm oil, logging and other industries that lead to deforestation with no regard for the wellbeing of local communities or global warming. Recently, our partners waged a successful advocacy campaign that led to the passage of a historic law acknowledging the right of local communities to own their ancestral lands.

Focus Issues:


Humanitarian Response, Land, Water and Climate Justice



Grantees:


15



Funded by AJWS since:


2001

Focus Issues:


Humanitarian Response, Land, Water and Climate Justice



Grantees:


15



Funded by AJWS since:


2001

Senegal

In Senegal, AJWS plays a pivotal role in supporting grassroots organizations working to strengthen the country’s democracy — helping people access justice, hold elected officials accountable and build a more equitable and just society. Advancing gender equity is at the core of their work, and our grantees have achieved significant progress in expanding leadership and political opportunities for women. Many of these organizations collaborate to grow vibrant social justice movements, inspiring young activists across the country to become politically engaged, push for social and political reform, and create a Senegal of the future that upholds the rights of all of its citizens.

AJWS also partners with organizations working to achieve lasting and just peace in the remote Casamance region of Senegal, where over 35 years of violent conflict has brought terror and instability into the lives of civilians and robbed people of their essential civil and political rights. Our grantees are mobilizing communities to join local peacemaking efforts (particularly those led by women), advocating for the inclusion of women in national peace talks and addressing the root cause of the conflict: social and political exclusion from the rest of their nation.

Focus Issues:


Civil and Political Rights



Grantees:


13



Funded by AJWS since:


1991

Focus Issues:


Civil and Political Rights



Grantees:


13



Funded by AJWS since:


1991

Uganda

In Uganda, authoritarian leadership has made the country increasingly hostile to activists fighting for the rights of women and girls, LGBTQI+ people and sex workers. while offering direct support for these at-risk communities to challenge bad laws and practices, offer legal aid and crisis response, and advocate for a safer environment. AJWS also supports

Across western and northern Uganda, AJWS supports feminist collectives and grassroots movements fighting to protect their communities’ land, forests and natural resources. These rural and Indigenous communities have seen their ancestral lands threatened by logging, industrial agriculture and other development that exacerbates the climate crisis, displaces thousands and thrusts families into poverty. As AJWS partners speak up against these industries, they’re also helping their communities thrive by expanding food sovereignty through ecological, small-scale agriculture.

Focus Issues:


Humanitarian Response, Land, Water and Climate Justice, Sexual Health and Rights



Grantees:


28



Funded by AJWS since:


2001

Focus Issues:


Humanitarian Response, Land, Water and Climate Justice, Sexual Health and Rights



Grantees:


28



Funded by AJWS since:


2001