The idea of creating a grantmaking and institutional support mechanism for Francophone women’s rights organizations was born in Bangkok (Thailand) on 28 October 2005 at the donors’ meeting where AWID action-research report on “Where is money for women’s rights?” was presented during AWID 10th Forum on “How does Change happen ?” The first part of the idea was materialized in 2006 with the creation of ROFAF (Network of Francophone Africa Women’s Organizations) thanks to an AWID Seed Grant for innovative ideas born at the Forum; but the second part related to the creation of a francophone women’s fund has been incubated at ROFAF in the form of a grant program. However after seven years of implementation this program has shown many limitations related to its ability to mobilize significant resources to reallocate, coordinate the entire grant-making process and monitor subgranted projects.
Because of this, in 2015 the author of both ideas decided to take back her original idea and create an autonomous Francophone women’s fund to meet the funding challenges faced by Francophone women’s rights activists and organizations. Thus was born XOESE, the Francophone Women’s Fund. XOESE [hᴐԑse] is a word that means “Believe in it” in Mina and Ewe – two African languages spoken in Togo, Benin, Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire.
XOESE is a feminist foundation of public utility created on September 1st 2015 and based in Lomé in Togo.
The vision of “XOESE, the Francophone Women’s Fund” is a world where women and girls fully enjoy all their fundamental human rights in a safe and sustainable economic and social environment and have equal opportunities to access resources and decision-making positions as men and boys.
Her mission is to mobilize financial, material and human resources and reinvest them to support the implementation of women’s and young women’s activists’ and organizations’ initiatives promoting women’s, young women’s and girls’ rights, their economic empowerment and gender equality in Global South French-speaking countries.
Her aim is to financially and technically support the implementation of women’s and young women’s organizations’ initiatives in Global South French-speaking countries. Her objectives are to:
- Provide financial support for the implementation of initiatives promoting the rights of women, young women and girls;
- Strengthen the institutional capacity of women’s and young women’s organizations;
- Encourage and support innovative initiatives aiming the empowerment of women’s and young women’s organizations.
XOESE aims to fund Francophone women’s and young women’s initiatives in the Global South namely:
- the 23 Sub-Saharan Francophone Africa countries (Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Comoros, Côte d’Ivoire, Djibouti, Gabon, Guinea, Equatorial Guinea, Madagascar, Mali, Mauritius, Mauritania, Niger, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Senegal, Seychelles, Chad, Togo)
- the Caribbean francophone country (Haiti) and
- the Pacific Francophone country (Vanuatu) as well as
- some of the 11 French overseas administrative divisions, departments and regions located:
- in Africa (Mayotte, Reunion),
- in Oceania (French Polynesia, New Caledonia, Wallis and Futuna) and
- in America (St. Martin, St. Bartholomew, Martinique, Guyana, Guadeloupe, St. Pierre and Miquelon)
Although XOESE will eventually support women and young women’s groups in all these francophone countries and will endeavor to do so whenever possible, we will begin however, our fieldwork in ten (10) countries:
- Burkina Faso,
- Central African Republic,
- Côte d’Ivoire,
- Democratic Republic of Congo,
- Niger and