ACWW Projects


£ invested


new projects
funded 2016-2019




direct beneficiaries
completed projects

ACWW invests in women's empowerment by funding small-scale, women-led projects in rural areas. We work with our own grassroots Member Societies around the world, and with local partner organisations, who collaborate with beneficiaries to create and implement projects.

The funds for ACWW Projects are raised by Members and Member Societies worldwide. This advances our women-to-women approach to development work and ensures that our network of rural women's organisations around the world is strengthened by the commitment of each woman who shares our philosophy.

Since ACWW began funding projects, more than £4 million has been invested. We believe that measuring impact and sustainability is critical and we understand that not every project can be a complete success given the circumstances of developing nations. To this end, between 2016 and 2019 we conducted 41 evaluation visits to active projects, and 8 follow-up visits to completed projects. The total number of direct beneficiaries stated above reflects projects completed and reporting in this three year period. As per UN population guidelines, and the average size of households in recipient countries, we estimate that the number of indirect beneficiaries is 56,732.

Our projects are funded in line with our Charitable Aims and Objectives, and drawn from six Focus Areas shown below:

Women Empowered Fund Focus Pots
Project Beneficiaries 1049 - Uganda

Project 1049: Sanitary Facilities for Improved Menstrual Hygiene, Uganda
This photo shows girls in front of one of the newly built washrooms at their school. ACWW local partner CCUg built 6 washrooms in 3 schools in the Jinja and Mayuge Districts.

ACWW Projects Background

By 1977, ACWW had established an extensive network of women’s organisations around the globe. Painfully aware that rural women are put at a disadvantage when compared to men and their urban counterparts, ACWW members saw an opportunity to do more in support of female initiative in rural areas and to improve their standard of living through cooperation.

The Projects Committee was established in 1978 and supporting initiatives from the grassroots level became the main philosophy behind the ACWW funding model. Project No. 1 was approved in 1979 to support Home Economics Training in Belize, providing women in remote rural settlements with the materials and skills to produce handicrafts and make nutritious meals for their families. Just over 40 years later, ACWW has a legacy of 1049 projects in 88 countries. We work hard to ensure that the infrastructure to support this mission is continuously improved.

Between the late 1990s and 2018, ACWW projects were funded up-front by ACWW, and the funds were gradually replenished by pledges and one-off donations over the next couple of years by Member Societies who adopted specific projects. Though this worked for many years, it was not sustainable and often left members disappointed that they could not adopt a project they would have liked to support.

In 2018 we launched the Women Empowered Fund, focusing donations into six Priority Focus Areas which reflect the charitable aims and objectives of ACWW. This funding model allows members and donors to choose a specific Focus Area to support, whilst ensuring the sustainability of ACWW Projects.