African Grandmothers: Reclaiming their Dignity and Rights, Overcoming AIDS

Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign

In the face of the HIV and AIDS pandemic, Africa’s grandmothers have held their families and communities together. When no one else knew what to do about the number of deaths, the numbers of sick – the social and economic devastation – grandmothers stepped up to care for millions of children orphaned by AIDS, sometimes as many as 10 to 15 in one household. They display astonishing reserves of love, courage and emotional resilience, even while grieving the loss of their own adult children.

The Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign supports community-based organizations that provide African grandmothers with food, health care, school fees and school uniforms for their grandchildren, counseling, social support, essential shelter, and income-generating programs.

Grandmothers face ‘triple jeopardy’—discrimination based on gender, age, and HIV status. With few resources, they have become advocates for change and leaders in their communities, pressing for their needs to be met and their human rights to be recognized by local and national governments.

With your support and their tenacity, they will prevail!

Grandmothers to
Grandmothers Campaign

In our group, we marvel at what the African grandmothers have accomplished. But I have to admit, we also talk about what ten years in the Grandmothers Campaign has meant to us: how we’ve stayed together, had fun, raised money, learned so much...and most important, maintained our deep feeling of connection.

— Grandmother in the Campaign

Key Milestones in the Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign

Over ten years of achievement, Grandmothers Groups and other Campaign supporters have raised more than $25 million in support of their African sisters.

Along the way, the Campaign has been energized by a number of key events and moments that speak to the essence of the strong connections Grandmothers have forged.

Resilience and Rights:
Grandmothers on the Move!

African grandmothers, and the organizations run by and for them, are beginning to mobilize for change – identifying the human rights they have yet to enjoy, and moving to claim them.

At the same time, there are hundreds of thousands of grandmothers who are still struggling with the lack of adequate food, shelter, healthcare and income to overcome the ravages of AIDS.

The Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign in North America currently raises 2 million dollars a year that goes directly to grassroots organizations run by and for grandmothers, effecting concrete and significant change.

We have an opportunity to support African grandmothers and their community-based organizations across sub-Saharan Africa to resurrect lives and rebuild resilience in their families and communities – and at the same time engage in the struggle to secure their human rights. The time is now!

What Your Support Can Do

15 million dollars in the next 5 years will have a powerful and direct long-lasting impact:

91 groups are supported and run by and for grandmothers and the orphaned children in their care. 15 million dollars over the next 5 years would enable us to support another 15 organizations.

This will mean:

15 million dollars will support National Grandmother Gatherings (like the October 2015 Gathering in Uganda and the South African Grandmothers Gathering in Durban in July, 2016).

These Gatherings provide a critical opportunity for grandmothers struggling with the devastating impact of AIDS to come together and share strategies for coping and rebuilding their communities, and enable them to strategize for the future and hammer out an Agenda for Action.

As a direct result, African grandmothers will be articulating their demands for their human rights to be recognized, respected and implemented – from protecting their property/land rights, to adequate healthcare for older women, to universal education and pensions!

15 X 5 - 15 million dollars over the next 5 years will support hundreds of thousands of grandmothers and children in their loving care!