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Hibo, an Action Aid staff member, helps coordinate and facilitate the distribution of dignity kits to women in an IDP camp in Somaliland.

Who we are

ActionAid is a global federation working for a world free from poverty and injustice. 

We want to see a just, fair and sustainable world, in which everybody enjoys the right to a life of dignity, and freedom from poverty and oppression.

So we work to achieve social justice and gender equality, and to eradicate poverty.

Our strategy is to build international momentum for social, economic and environmental justice, driven by people living in poverty and exclusion.

In practice, this means working closely with people living in poverty and exclusion, civil society organisations, social movements and supporters. Together, we deliver grassroots programmes, provide emergency relief and campaign for things such as women’s economic rights, tax justice and climate justice.

Our work falls into four broad areas: women, politics and economics, land and climate, and emergencies. We have a particular focus on women’s rights; it’s a thread that runs through all our work.

ActionAid was founded as a charity in the UK in 1972, and soon grew its presence in countries around the world. In the 1990s, we adopted our human rights-based approach to development. ActionAid International was formed in 2003 to provide the global secretariat for the ActionAid federation of country offices. Our head office is in Johannesburg, South Africa, and we also have hubs in Asia, Europe and the Americas. 

This is our international website, where we share inspiring stories from around the federation, bold thought-leadership and practical tools that catalyse change. You can visit any of our websites to find out more about the work of ActionAid offices around the world, and how you can get involved. We also have a Global Leadership Team, comprising some staff from ActionAid International, and a number of country directors from around the world. You can learn more about this team here.

We believe in the power in people. If we can support people to know, claim and defend their rights, the world will be a fairer place.

Areas of work

ActionAid worker Uthiya yea Marma is checking Anowara's body temperature before letting her enter inside ActionAid's women-friendly space.


The number of complex and protracted emergencies is increasing. As a result, more people than ever are vulnerable and need humanitarian support.
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Wangu Kanja of the Wangu Kanja Foundation, an ActionAid partner organisation in Kenya supporting women who have experienced gender-based violence.

Women's rights

Women, who pay the highest price of unjust policies and patriarchal societies, must play a key role in order to bring about social change.
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The all-women farmers association, Vamos Prouzir, walks through flooding to assess the damage done to their farmland in Buzi, Mozambique.

Land and climate

The climate crisis is destroying lives and livelihoods across the world. People living in poverty – especially women – are most affected. This needs to change.
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Hearing-impaired girls learning about education funding through tax justice in Tanzania.

Politics and economics

Representative and inclusive democracies and equal societies are important for a just world, but civic space is shrinking and regressive taxation is keeping people in poverty.
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A collection of logos from some of our funding partners
These are the logos of some of our funding partners. We are grateful to them for their support.