Information Courtesy of the Stephen Lewis Foundation
The Stephen Lewis Foundation launched the Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaignin March 2006, in response to the emerging crisis faced by African grandmothers as they struggled to care for millions of children orphaned by AIDS. What began with only a few groups of committed Canadian grandmothers has since evolved into a dynamic and responsive movement, made up of grandmothers and grandothers working to mobilize support in Canada for Africa’s grandmothers.
The Campaign currently boasts more than 240 grandmothers groups across the country. Many of the groups have organized into regional and national networks in order to support each other’s efforts in solidarity with African grandmothers and the children in their care..
Resources from the Grandmothers Campaign go to grassroots organizations that support African grandmothers with food, health care, school fees and school uniforms for their grandchildren, income-generating programmes, counselling, social support, essential shelter, and other necessities. Throughout Africa, grassroots organizations run by and for grandmothers are sharing insights, deepening their expertise, collaborating with other local organizations, and building their capacity to turn the tide of AIDS at community level.
The Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign exists to support the indomitable African grandmothers who are caring for the millions of children who have been orphaned by AIDS. Members of the Grandmothers Campaign share three goals. They work to:
Raise funds to meet the needs of African grandmothers and the children in their care;
Listen to African grandmothers, respect their expertise and amplify their voices, in order to promote authentic and substantive responses to the pandemic in Africa;
Build solidarity among African and Canadian grandmothers in order to motivate and sustain the vital work of turning the tide of AIDS in Africa.
Canadian grandmothers groups are tremendously active in their communities. They put on concerts, organize card tournaments, and sell jewellery. They visit countless schools and community organizations. They bake, cook, sew, knit, paint, write, organize cycle tours, walks, and even ride motorcycles – all to raise funds and awareness for grandmothers in sub-Saharan Africa through the Stephen Lewis Foundation.