Women in philanthropy characterize a key feature of African philanthropy in that they go beyond financial help. They are often also willing to offer their time and expertise. It is also documented that their impact in philanthropy typically differs from that of their male counterparts due to their willingness to take on ‘harder’ issues; those that are less likely to be quantifiable for instance, or those that affect those at the margins of society. Women tend not to rely on the zeitgeist buzz when deciding what causes to take on, and thus are likely to have a more genuine impact. Despite this, women’s representation in philanthropy is still minimal or superficial in nature.
This booklet is a small step in correcting that. It’s a compilation of women who have put in years’ worth of philanthropic work to alleviate a varying amount of issues across the continent. They have offered time, expertise and even funds, and have mobilized others to do the same. I have had the pleasure of working with most of them in the span of my own career and I’ve been made better for it.