Projects and Partners
AGRECOL Andes foundation
Fundación AGRECOL-Andes is a civil society organization based in Cochabamba, Bolivia that promotes sustainable agriculture and agro-ecology. Established in 2001, it works with rural and indigenous communities to share information and to develop their capacities for strengthened local economic opportunities, food security and food sovereignty, as well as sustainable use of natural resources. The ultimate goal is to improve the living conditions and livelihoods of small-holder farmers and indigenous families in the Andes. AGRECOL-Andes actively shares and documents local knowledge and experiences, as well as manages and disseminates this information, promotes participatory methodologies, and provides capacity building and training to small-scale producers. In 2013, Crossroads and AGRECOL-Andes began working together to support capacity building and local economic initiatives with rural associations; in particular, strengthening business management, marketing and value chains for production, transformation, and commercialization of local organic products for local or regional markets.
Asociación Nacional Ecuménica de Desarrollo (ANED)
The Asociación Nacional Ecuménica de Desarrollo (ANED) is a microfinance institution providing financial services (mainly micro-credit loans) to rural and economically marginalized populations in Bolivia. ANED prioritizes rural and peri-urban localities because of their relative lack of access to such services. In keeping with the organization’s rural-oriented mandate, the loan portfolio is dominated by agricultural/farming-related loans. Often, smallholder agricultural producers are unable to procure the necessary financing from banks and other institutions due to a lack of credit history, lack of collateral, or simply because of the “risky” nature of agricultural sector activities. ANED offers a range of financing options, from individual loans, to group and association loans, to communal bank loans. As such, ANED aims to better conditions of access to financing and other auxiliary financial services for producers and rural entrepreneurs, according to their needs and requirements, leading to better quality of life, improved productivity and increased household incomes. Since its inception in 1978, ANED has provided US$70,000,000 in capital and loans through its 42 offices located across all nine departments of Bolivia. ANED has been working in partnership with Crossroads International since 1999, to strengthen institutional capacity as well as deepen its impact and broaden the reach of its microfinance services in support of economic and social development.
Asociación de Organizaciones de Productores Ecológicos de Bolivia (AOPEB)
The Asociación de Organizaciones de Productores Ecológicos de Bolivia (AOPEB) is a national organization representing eighty-five (85) organic producer organizations which in turn represent over 70,000 ecological small-holder producers throughout all nine Departments of Bolivia. Founded in 1991, AOPEB promotes sustainable agriculture; organic market development; food security; and food sovereignty. Its programs and services focus on capacity building and organizational strengthening of its member organizations via training and technical assistance in matters such as: sustainable production methods and technologies, commercialization and transformation, marketing, and development of business / managerial competencies. AOPEB also actively participates in political advocacy with respect to sustainable production systems and ecological norms (e.g. certification, regulations, etc.). In 2013, Crossroads and AOPEB began a collaboration to support program development and services focused on rural youth participation in agriculture, rural producer organizations and/or “eco-social “enterprises.
Pro-rural is a Bolivian NGO working in value chain finance (small and medium enterprise or SME financing) and rural development. Pro-rural promotes the improved quality of life of rural producers, by facilitating sustainable economic development processes that favour their inclusion and the development of connections between stakeholders along the value chain (i.e. suppliers, processors, buyers). The overall objective of the organization is to support small rural producers and their organizations/enterprises with an appropriate combination of financial and non-financial services in order to have influence on capital accumulation and the development of productive and management competencies in rural areas. Pro-rural has been working with Crossroads since 2007. The partnership is strengthening Pro-rural’s capacity to assist rural enterprises and campesina (peasant) economic organizations (OECAs). In 2010, Crossroads and Pro-Rural launched a tripartite partnership with the First Nations Agricultural Association (FNAA) based in British Columbia.
Abantu for Development
Founded in 1991 by African women living in London, Abantu for Development strives to eradicate the entrenched cultural, legal and political obstacles to women attaining economic independence and equality before the law. It aims to ensure the advancement of women's interests, benefiting men and women as equal partners. Abantu's approach to development is based on a people-centered philosophy, one that is participatory, African and gender-centered. Abantu has been working with Crossroads International in a partnership project since 2007 that is seeing them collaborate with the YWCA of Canada.
Network of Women in Growth (NEWIG)
NEWIG was founded in 2002 as a skills development and gender employment non-profit organisation with the goal of improving the conditions of the less privileged in society, more specifically women. NEWIG works to create a much needed platform for women, so that they have access to vocations (economic empowerment), good health and sustainable lifestyles as well as political leverage in society. NEWIG's mission is to improve the socio-economic and political status of women in Ghana, particularly the poor, marginalized and vulnerable. Their goals are to empower women to attain and play leadership roles in society, make women aware of their right and get women into gainful employment.
Founded in 1993, Pro-Link works to bring about development opportunities for the rural poor, especially women and girls. Its mission is to advocate for and empower disadvantaged people to improve their health, educational and socio-economic status. To achieve its objectives, Pro-Link’s efforts embrace a broad cross-section of rural development and advocacy issues, including reproductive health and education, HIV/AIDS, child survival, income generation, vocational training, and food security. Pro-Link has supported successful programs in six districts and 70 communities in Ghana. Pro-Link has been a working with Crossroads International since 2006.
Women in Law and Development-Ghana (WiLDAF-Ghana)
WiLDAF Ghana is a non-governmental organization committed to the protection and promotion of women’s rights. It is a member of the pan-African WiLDAF network, active in 31 countries across the African continent. WiLDAF works to improve women’s access to justice as well as increase women’s participation in democracy through a combination of advocacy, training, legal literacy, education and research.
WiLDAF is a member of NetRight, the network for women’s rights in Ghana, and also benefits from the support from its pan-African network. The organization demonstrates great leadership in advocacy locally, nationally and internationally through its collaborative work with members and coalitions. For example, WiLDAF was instrumental in the adoption of the Protocol on the Rights of Women to the African Charter and was extremely active in lobbying for the adoption of the Ghana Domestic Violence Act. WiLDAF has been working with Crossroads International since 2007 in a partnership project which also involves the Metropolitan Action Committee on Violence Against Women and Children (METRAC)
Association Jeunesse Action Mali (AJA-Mali)
Association Jeunesse Action Mali (AJA-Mali) an NGO founded in 1993, supports job creation through education, skills development, and professional placements for youth. One of Bamako’s most respected NGO’s, AJA-Mali supports youth through a number of targeted programs: classroom-based curricula for ages 6 to 14, classroom-based curricula for ages 9 to 16, skills training placements for youth aged 15 to 18 and professional placements and small business creation programs for youth aged 18 to 35. Its programs have led to the creation of numerous enterprises producing items such as toys or furniture. Since 2007, AJA-Mali has been part of a partnership project with Crossroads International, which also involves the SADC Centre-de-la-Mauricie aimed at providing Malian youth with job skills and training in entrepreneurship.
Association malienne pour la promotion des jeunes (AMPJ)
Founded in 1989, the AMPJ is a Malian NGO dedicated to increasing the income of women through the promotion of income-generating activities, and offers training, equipment and microcredit. It also works to promote grassroots community organization and to improve the quality of education. AMPJ has actively supported the development of the COPROKAZAN shea butter collective involving women from the Zantiébougou region of Mali. AMPJ has worked with Crossroads International since 2000 and has began work with the ECOF – CDEC of Trois-Rivières on a Crossroads partnership project in 2006.
Association pour le Développement des Activités de Production et de Formation (ADAF/GALLE)
Founded in 1988, the mission of the Association pour le Développement des Activités de Production et de Formation (ADAF/GALLE) is to participate in the promotion and development of women’s production activities in the areas of agriculture, environment, hydraulics, technology, health and education.
With its head office in Bamako, the organization operates in three regions, five zones, ten municipalities and forty-eight villages and neighbourhoods in Mali. It is active within fifty production organizations, twenty five of which are women’s groups. The ADAF/GALLE specializes in promoting women’s rights, in reinforcing the production capacity of local organizations and institutions, in environment and sustainable agriculture, and in helping women gain access to equipment and markets.
Created in 1984, Kilabo is one of the first NGOs established in Mali. It works to increase the development of the most vulnerable communities in Mali using a participatory approach, supporting community organizations by providing training, tools and other relevant means. Kilabo contributes to the emergence of grassroots groups capable of effectively participating in local development initiatives and works to create the conditions that enable the participation of disadvantaged groups in economic and political activities. Kilabo also aims to instill a respect for the environment. Kilabo works with more than a hundred villages in the regions of Koulikoro and Sikasso. Kilabo has worked in partnership with Crossroads since 1994. In 2008, the Centre mauricien de service et d'éducation populaire (COMSEP) in Québec joined Crossroads and Kilabo in a tripartite partenership.
Réseau national d’appui à la promotion de l’économie sociale et solidaire du Mali (RENAPESS)
The Réseau national d’appui à la promotion de l’économie sociale et solidaire du Mali (RENAPESS), created in 2003, is a group of 60 social enterprises sharing a common goal: to promote the social economy. RENAPESS is helping to build a new way of living and thinking about the economy, while respecting democratic values. It’s a practice that aims for a world with better social and economic conditions, and that embraces sustainable development. As a network of social and economic actors, and Mali-based support organizations, RENAPESS works to incite behaviour and values based on ethics, equality, responsibility and common ground, in the interest of creating conditions locally that will permit humanitarian social and economic development. Crossroads supports this organization’s work, specifically its youth projects.
Association pour la promotion de la femme sénégalaise (APROFES)
APROFES works to support the socio-economic and cultural development of Senegalese women and to increase the role of women in decision-making. The organization was founded in 1987 by members of a cultural association called “Mag Daan”, who believed that development efforts were failing because they did not take into account the needs of women. APROFES’ projects are focused on raising awareness of women’s rights, increasing the social, political and economic role played by women, enabling better access by women to health services, increasing women’s economic independence and reducing violence against women. APROFES is also an important player in the Senegalese women’s movement through its coalition work at the national level. Crossroads and APROFES have been partners since 2007. APROFES has recently begun working in a Crossroads International partnership project which also involves the women’s shelter, l’Escale de l’Estrie, based in Sherbrooke.
Réseau des Organisations Paysannes et Pastorales du Sénégal (RESOPP)
Established in 2002, the Réseau des Organisations Paysannes et Pastorales du Sénégal (RESOPP) is a legally recognized union of rural cooperatives whose members work mainly in agriculture and livestock, as well as related processing and marketing activities. RESOPP’s mission is to “help improve, in a supportive and sustainable way, the living conditions of Senegal’s rural populations, through viable cooperative institutions that provide efficient and adapted services in production, processing and microfinance.” As a farmers’ organization managed by and for producers, RESOPP does not undertake its own projects, but rather offers collective support to member cooperatives. Through its activities, the union reaches more than 30,000 farmers who work in the network’scooperatives.
Union Nationale des Femmes Coopératrices du Sénégal (UNFCS)
Since its foundation in 1996, the Union Nationale des Femmes Coopératrices du Sénégal (UNFCS) has positioned itself as a lever of economic and social development in Senegal. Focused mainly on rural communities, its activities aim, namely, to build women’s self-confidence, as well as enable them to acquire specialized skills and master specific techniques, improve their position within the home, and increase their income. UNFCS works mainly in food and cereal processing, dyeing and soap-making. With a goal to represent women’s interests at the national level, UNFCS currently reaches more than 15,000 women in 10 regions.
Family and Life Association of Swaziland (FLAS)
The FLAS vision is a country that ensures its young people enjoy good health as a fundamental right, live free from HIV and AIDS, and have the confidence and capacities to make a meaningful contribution to the sustainable livelihoods of self and others. To meet this vision, the mission of FLAS is to remain the leading organization in the field of youth sexual and reproductive health services including HIV and AIDS in Swaziland through the delivery of innovative, youth-focused services; the sharing of best practices and knowledge; through advocacy and partnerships; and sustainable, gender-sensitive service delivery models that result in the prevention and reduction of unwanted pregnancies, maternal morality, sexually transmitted infections, HIV and AIDS, unsafe abortions and gender-based violence.
Gone Rural boMake
Gone Rural boMake, the not-for-profit arm of Gone Rural, was established in 2006 to assist the artisans and producers of Gone Rural. With commitment to sustainable social responsibility and Fair Trade principles, Gone Rural has successfully created a business model that empowers rural women by providing them with home based income and skills training. Gone Rural provides a regular source of income generation to more than 760 women, and Gone Rural boMake complements this by implementing social programs benefitting these women and their communities. Gone Rural boMake positively impacts the lives of more than 6000 people through education, health, and social programs. With their support, clean drinking water has been provided in ten communities, they have paid school fees for orphans and vulnerable children, trained HIV/AIDS peer educators, and created access to a mobile wellness clinic. In addition to service delivery in the communities, Gone Rural boMake has also been actively implementing awareness programs related to women’s rights, violence against women, and governance.
Swaziland Action Group Against Abuse (SWAGAA)
Founded in 1990, SWAGAA is a leader in the fight against gender-based violence in Swaziland. SWAGAA has worked for over a decade to bring the abuse of women and children into the public eye and to the attention of decision-makers, through advocacy, education, and media work. In addition, SWAGAA provides counselling and other services to victims of abuse and has recently increased its involvement in programs designed to prevent abuse, including an innovative project for engaging men. SWAGAA has taken part in regional efforts to stem gender-based violence and hosted an international conference on preventing abuse in 2005. SWAGAA has been working in partnership with Crossroads International since 2003.
Groupe de réflexion et d’action, Femme, Démocratie et Développement / Centre de Recherche, d’Information et de Formation pour la Femme (GF2D/CRIFF)
GF2D-CRIFF was founded in 1992 to increase women’s participation in public life and to ensure the civil, economic and political rights of women are legally protected. GF2D establishes the organization’s policies, while CRIFF implements their programming. GF2D-CRIFF runs seven legal aid offices, a reference center on women’s rights and offers specialized training on gender issues. Its work focuses on three sectors: legal services for women (including the training of over 600 paralegals working across the country), public education on the rights of women and the promotion of women’s leadership and participation in civil service, politics and public life. GF2D-CRIFF is a well-respected member of Togolese civil society and has been working for over fifteen years in the face of an unstable political situation and a total lack of foreign aid – a testament to the organization’s determination. Since 2004, GF2D-CRIFF has been one of only two NGO’s invited to take part in the national dialogue aimed at resolving Togo’s political crisis, which has persisted since the 1990’s. GF2D-CRIFF has been a partner of Crossroads International since 2007.
ONG La Colombe
ONG La Colombe was created in 1990, in Lomé, by women of various professions all motivated to fight against poverty and defend women and children’s health in Togo. The organization's mission is to provide quality services that meet the true needs of women and children through integrated and holistic actions. They are fighting for a just, equitable and democratic society where women and children can live to their full potential. ONG La Colombe is recognized as a reputable organization, capable of fulfilling its mission, influencing policy development, developing concrete actions in favor of women and children and encouraging women and girls to acquire a higher education. Since 2012, ONG La Colombe works in partnership with Crossroads International to strengthen gender equality, promote women entrepreneurship and the rights of children.
Centre d’organisation mauricien de services et d’éducation populaire (COMSEP)
The Centre d’organisation mauricien de services et d’éducation populaire (COMSEP) is a non-profit organization founded to help people living in poverty in the Mauricie region and improve their living conditions. Based in Trois-Rivières, the COMSEP brings together people in need, helping them identify their problems so that they may find solutions and take steps to improve their lives. COMSEP is also a literacy and public education hub as well as a community services centre. What’s more, the organization works in tandem with Crossroads International and the Malian organization Kilabo, helping men and women living in rural Mali become better equipped to participate in their community’s social, political, economical and cultural life.
Corporation de développement économique communautaire (CDEC) du Centre-nord (Montréal)
The CDEC Centre-Nord’s mission is to develop and strengthen economic activities and employment in the areas of Villeray, Saint-Michel and Parc-Extension, to support the local population’s socio-economic development and to fight against social exclusion.
This mission is consistent with the community economic development approach, which is defined as local action to create economic opportunities and improve communities’ social conditions in a sustainable and inclusive manner. Special attention is paid to the most disadvantaged persons.
CDEC is also a key player in promoting concerted action to develop structuring projects in its area and enhance residents’ employability. CDEC offers its services and expertise to private and community-based businesses, whether they are starting up, consolidating their activities or expanding.
Corporation de développement économique communautaire (CDEC) Rosemont–Petite-Patrie
Founded in 1990, la Corporation de développement économique communautaire (CDEC) Rosemont–Petite-Patrie is a non-profit organization that brings together local players in the area of Rosemont-Petite-Patrie in Montreal to support economic development tailored to the needs of the local population. The CDEC works with residents, community organizations, unions, public institutions, businesspeople and municipal representatives. By employing an approach that fuses economic and social development, the CDEC implements projects that not only create local economic opportunities but that also fit with the character and colour of the area. The CDEC has been working on a partnership project with Crossroads International and the Association des groupements villageois féminins, based in Mali, since 2007.
ÉCOF-CDEC de Trois-Rivières
The Corporation de Développement Économique Communautaire (CDEC) has been working in Quebec’s Mauricie region since 1996, mainly in and around the city of Trois-Rivières. The CDEC works to fight poverty and isolation, and aims to improve the living conditions in the community by supporting local social and economic development initiatives. The CDEC supports the growth of social enterprises geared towards the needs of the community. The CDEC has been working in partnership with Crossroads Internationaland the Association malienne pour les jeunes (AMPJ) since 2007.
First Nations Agricultural Association (FNAA)
The FNAA is a member-based association which seeks to foster the social and economic well being of aboriginal businesses in British Columbia. FNAA believes that agriculture is the cornerstone of economic development for all nations. FNAA assists in the start-up, promotion and sustainability of Aboriginal agri-businesses in British Columbia by: assisting Aboriginal communities and producers to build capacity and develop their agriculture, agri-food, or traditional agricultural based businesses through the provision of culturally appropriate assistance, marketing, education, and financial products and services; and promoting and advocating on behalf of Aboriginal agriculture in British Columbia. FNAA provides agricultural credit, business support services, marketing of agri-food products, hands on education and training as well as youth development programs. FNAA has been working with Pro-Rural through a Crossroads partnership project since 2010.
Green Beaver is a family enterprise founded in 2002 by a biochemist, Karen Clark and a microbiologist, Alain Ménard. They both left the pesticide and pharmaceutical industries to start a new healthier and more natural life. Their mission is to help people reduce the amount of toxic chemical ingredients they are exposed to and that ultimately pollute our environment. Green Beaver relies on pure, natural ingredients to bring you safe alternatives to common household cleaning and personal care products. From their family to yours, they are proud to offer products that are good for you, good for the environment, and good for future generations.
Haida Gwaii Community Futures (HGCF)
HGCF is a development corporation providing business financing and business training to rural entrepreneurs. HGCF organized in 1998 to serve all part of the Queen Charlotte Islands (British Columbia). Its mission is to support entrepreneurial spirit to create a sustainable economic future for Haida Gwaii. HGCF offers services in three key areas: guidance, coaching and mentoring to businesses in their planning and operational decision-making; support community economic development activities; and provide services to assist individuals in developing their careers and employment opportunities by providing job-counselling, identification of training opportunities, sourcing training funds and writing résumés. HGCF has been working with Crossroads and Bolivian partner Foncresol since 2010.
Metropolitan Action Committee on Violence Against Women and Children (METRAC)
METRAC is a not-for-profit, community-based organization that works to ensure women, youth, and children live free from all forms of violence and the threat of violence. METRAC's programs seek to prevent and end all individual, institutional and systemic forms of violence. The organization works collaboratively with a broad range of partners to develop strategies to end violence against women and build safer communities for everyone. Among its various experiences is the development of the Ontario Women's Justice Network (OWJN) - a website for equality-seeking organizations and individuals working on issues of justice for women who have experienced violence; most recently, OWJN has been involved in coordinating a response to the Joint House of Commons/Senate Report on Child Custody and Access, ensuring that the government is made aware of the special needs and interests of women who are leaving abusive relationships. METRAC has been working in partnership with Crossroads International and WiLDAF, based in Ghana, since 2007.
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