AKIDWA’S HISTORY

Over two decades, AkiDwA has gained recognition as a leading NGO for highlighting the issues faced by migrant women in Ireland.

AkiDwA has developed the capacity of hundreds of migrant women and  communities living in Ireland through our network, resource centre, outreach and training programmes. 

All of our projects  aim to  promote migrants participation in their local communities; in civic and political structures, government consultations and decision-making processes.

AkiDwA consults with migrant women and other key stakeholders, identifies discriminatory practices  and develops evidence-based and representative solutions that address key issues like  gender-based violence, and discrimination.

AkiDwA Head of Operations & Strategy Salome Mbugua

AkiDwA emerged as an organisation between 1999 and 2001, after a series of regular meetings between migrant women were initiated by Salome Mbugua, who came to Ireland from Kenya in 1994.

The very first meeting was  in 1999 in Dublin’s Temple Bar.
By 2001, with the support of the Catherine McAuley Centre, Salome had mobilised a group of African women who  met regularly to share their experiences of living in Ireland.

In 2002 AkiDwA obtained funding from the then Combat Poverty Agency to carry out a pilot needs assessment of African women living in Ireland. The survey elicited responses from over two hundred females from seventeen counties. What emerged from these meetings were feelings of exclusion, isolation, racial abuse and discrimination and issues related to gender-based violence. The group went on to meet regularly with an external facilitator.

By 2003 some more formal structures were in place.  AkiDwA was registered as a company with guarantee but without capital share. However, limited funding meant that most of our work continued to be carried out on a voluntary basis until 2005, when Salome received financial support from Social Entrepreneur Ireland to develop AkiDwA.

By 2007 AkiDwA had achieved tremendous support in terms of funding resources, the organisation also acquired charitable status during this period and developed their first strategic plan.

A strategic evaluation and review undertaken by the organisation in 2018 showed  that AkiDwA remains a highly respected, credible  and relevant organisation that is recognised for  its unique expertise and longevity in the field. AkiDwA  remains unique in Ireland as a migrant led, national women’s representative organisation.

AkiDwA Health Fair Gets Great Support

Almost 200 people visited the  first AkiDwA Health Fair in Dublin last Friday, when AkiDwA joined forces with Cairde and a host of health-focused  organisations in St Agatha’s Hall, Dublin 1. People came along from many parts of Dublin as well as from Balbriggan and Offaly, drawn by the free treatments, a pilates class and […]

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Obituary: Sister Joan McManus

AkiDwA is mourning the loss of a phenomenal supporter and a true friend Sister Joan with the Kenyan Ambassador Catherine Muigai  and Embassy Development Officer Amaka at AkiDwA’s 10th Anniversary Celebration on 23 September 2011 at the Gresham Hotel, Dublin   © Brian MacCormaic/Photo-Image Sister Joan McManus, of the Sisters of Mercy, who died last […]

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