Glad to be walking this road together

The whole AWID team would like to express our immense respect and appreciation for the inspiring global community we're all part of, grounded in solidarity and integrity in the face of challenges.


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By now, AWID has been organizing international Forums for several decades. Every single one has presented its own specific set of challenges. So it's no surprise that the 2016 Forum is no exception.

In February, we announced that we would be postponing the AWID International Forum from May to September due to the uncertainty at that time around the Zika virus situation in Brazil. It was a difficult decision given the tremendous momentum of collective work that was building towards the Forum in May.

Although we are convinced that the decision to postpone was correct, we were of course concerned about the impact the change of dates might have on our partners, session organizers, and approximately 2,000 participants we expect to attend the Forum.

A tremendous response

When we announced the change we invited you to share your reactions and feedback, and were very pleased to receive close to a hundred direct responses in English, Spanish, French and Portuguese from all corners of our global community.

We were even more pleased that the overwhelming majority of messages were expressions of tremendous support, appreciation of our decision-making process and the decision itself, as well as enthusiastic re-commitment to participate in the Forum in September. (We also answered individual concerns to the best of our abilities, and welcome additional questions and input.)

A small taste of your messages

So sorry to hear about the postponement because we were all looking forward to being with you in May and sharing learning (and fun) at the Forum. Thanks for modelling the thoughtfulness and care of a strong feminist organisation. We at African Women’s Development Fund (AWDF) stand in solidarity with you – and we know how difficult it is to make a responsible decision after all the work you have put into the Forum already. We had to make a similar decision regarding the impact of Ebola just a short while before we were going to hold the African Grantmakers Network Assembly at the end of 2014. In the end the delay didn’t make much of a difference to the event, which was seen as a big success. We'll see you in September!

– Theo Sowa, CEO of AWDF, Ghana



Your thoughtful, authentic and transparent decision making is an example of we how can ensure that wellness and sustainability is at the center of our movements. Thank you for your leadership, know that you are appreciated and loved. In solidarity!

– Shalini Eddens, Urgent Action Fund, US


Compañeras, we applaud your decision. Despite the logistical problems it implies, it demonstrates your sensitivity and responsibility in the face of the current epidemic, and your commitment to the safety of participants at the Forum.

– Daptnhe Cuevas, Consorcio para el Diálogo, Mexico


We believe your decision to postpone the Forum is taken with all consideration and analysis. Thanks for your efforts to organize this essential opportunity to learn and gain knowledge from other women’s movements across the globe.

– Omayma Elmardi, National Sudanese Women Association


We acknowledge that you have already applied "collective power". We were already looking forward to coming but your explanation has convinced us. We wish you successful continuation and good health in organizing the Forum.

– Rarinjanahary, Association Hortencia, Madagascar

An inspiring global community

The whole AWID team is deeply touched by your support and we'd like to express our immense respect and appreciation for the inspiring global community we're all part of, grounded in solidarity and integrity in the face of challenges.  

Your thoughtful responses and commitment encourage us to work to expand and strengthen our collective momentum as we engage with each other during these next several months on the road to the Forum in September.

Keep in touch!

Stay tuned to Forum-related news and to find out about upcoming opportunities for engagement and dialogue by subscribing to our free bi-weekly newsletter, and following us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.

As always, we welcome your input into this collective process.

We look forward to being in touch and seeing many of you at the Forum in September.

With appreciation,
The AWID team

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