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TrustAfrica "is an independent foundation that strives to secure the conditions for democracy and equitable development throughout the continent. Led by Africans, we convene dialogues, catalyze ideas, and provide grants and technical assistance to organizations working to advance these goals."

Program Areas:

• Democracy & Civil Society: "TrustAfrica works to secure the conditions for democracy by strengthening the capacity of civil society organizations."

• Equitable Development: "TrustAfrica supports efforts to foster African enterprise and extend the benefits of economic growth to all members of society."

• African Philanthropy: "TrustAfrica leverages new and traditional forms of African giving to advance democracy and development and to minimize reliance on external donors." [1]

"TrustAfrica, first known as the Special Initiative for Africa, began in 2001 under the aegis of the Ford Foundation. Its premise was that Africans need a greater voice in the international donor community as well as philanthropic resources that Africans control.

"During our pilot phase, we conducted a series of workshops that drew 160 leading figures from across the continent to set priorities and map out strategies for funding. After inviting our partner organizations to submit proposals to implement these recommendations, we made exploratory grants to fund approximately twenty projects.

"In 2006 TrustAfrica became a truly African foundation with the opening of our new headquarters in Dakar, Senegal. The Ford Foundation continues to provide support, but we are now an independent organization governed solely by Africans. TrustAfrica is recognized in the United States as a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization and in Mauritius as a Global Business Company (category 2) with charitable status." [2]


"Our lead funder is the Ford Foundation, which laid the groundwork for TrustAfrica in 2001 by establishing the Special Initiative for Africa. The initiative was later spun off as an independent foundation and renamed TrustAfrica. Ford continues to provide generous support, but it does not exercise control over TrustAfrica’s activities. Moreover, we have begun to diversify our resources with grants from other institutional funders — starting with the International Development Research Centre in Canada, the MacArthur and Packard Foundations in the United States, and the Oak Foundation in Switzerland — that are working to strengthen African institutions." [3]


Accessed October 2008: [4]

Board of Trustees

  • Fouad Abdelmoumni (Morocco), executive director, Al Amana
  • Akwasi Aidoo (Ghana), executive director, TrustAfrica
  • Akwe Amosu (Nigeria), senior policy analyst (Africa), Open Society Institute
  • Malusi Mpumlwana (South Africa), Bishop, Northern Diocese, Ethiopian Episcopal Church
  • Adhiambo Odaga (Kenya), representative for West Africa, Ford Foundation
  • Gerry Salole (Ethiopia/Somalia), chief executive officer, European Foundation Centre
  • Bahru Zewde (Ethiopia), founding member and past board chairman, Forum for Social Studies

Accessed October 2008: [5]




Resources and articles

Related Sourcewatch


  1. Home, TrustAfrica, accessed October 30, 2008.
  2. Who We Are, TrustAfrica, accessed October 30, 2008.
  3. Our Funders, TrustAfrica, accessed October 30, 2008.
  4. Our Board, TrustAfrica, accessed October 30, 2008.
  5. Our Staff, TrustAfrica, accessed October 30, 2008.