How Can You Help?
There are many ways you can help support the Grassroot Grannies in our efforts to help African grannies and their orphaned grandchildren. 

You can make a donation to the Grassroot Grannies, assist in our fundraising events, purchase our cards, jewellery and other items and spread the word about the Grandmothers Campaign. 

What is the Stephen Lewis Foundation?

The Stephen Lewis Foundation is a non profit charitable organization supporting community-level organizations that are turning the tide of HIV/AIDS in Africa. They provide care and support to women, orphans, grandmothers and people living with HIV and AIDS.  Since 2003, they have committed and distributed more than $100 million to 1700 initiatives, and partnered with over 325 community-based organizations in 15 African countries. To find out more  click here

Why have we decided to support the Stephen Lewis Foundation?
We are connecting with the Foundation because we feel confident that our help reaches the grandmothers and children most in need. For example, the Foundation helps grandmothers provide school fees for their grandchildren, secure food, provide opportunities to earn a living and assist them with counseling and much needed social and health care support.  To learn more about specific projects and how the money  is used to help community-based organizations click here to read Voices From the Frontlines

Calculating Administrative Costs
Many have asked how much of the money raised for the Foundation goes toward administrative costs. The Stephen Lewis Foundation is one of very few charitable organizations that is able to keep their administrative costs as low "as humanly possible".  Their costs have been broken down into three categories: core administration, fundraising or funds development, and program funding.  Click here to read a letter by Stephen Lewis himself on where the money goes.  


The Grassroot Grannies, launched in 2006, is part of the grandmother movement sweeping Canada. There are currently over 240 similar granny groups across Canada involving more than 10,000 people. To date close to $39M has been raised through the Grandmothers Campaign 

  Did You Know?

In 2017, there were 36.9 million people living with HIV worldwide.  Since the start of the global AIDS epidemic an estimated 78 million have been infected and 35 million have died of AIDS-related illnesses. 

Sub-Saharan Africa is home to roughly 70% of all people living with HIV, but only 15% of the global population.

To read the most recent (2016) UN AIDS Fact Sheets
click here 

  Ottawa-Gatineau Region Grandmothers Network (O-GRGN)

The O-GRGN is a a loosely formed network of 19 granny groups in the Ottawa - Gatineau region spreading out from as far west as Perth, north to Deep River and Pembroke, south to Morrisburg and east to Metcalfe and Quebec in the towns of Aylmer and Wakefield.  The O-GRGN convenes meetings of key leaders in the regional granny groups, hosts the Granny Fest, a learning and sharing one day conference every 18 months and organizes from time to time information and awareness events.

The grandmothers groups share three goals
  • Raise funds to meet the needs of African grandmothers and children in their care
  • Raise awareness about the expertise and leadership of Africa's grandmothers and their struggle to secure a hopeful and healthy future their children in their care
  • Build solidarity among grandmothers in order to better understand and sustain the vital work being done at the grassroots to turn the tide of AIDS in Africa

We are a group of friends living in the National Capital region supporting, for the past 13 years, the 
 Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign 
of the Stephen Lewis Foundation. 
We are also affiliated with The Grandmothers Advocacy Network (GRAN).

As the number of AIDS orphans in Africa continues to rise, responsibility for orphan care has shifted to grandmothers, who are undoubtedly the unsung heroes of Africa.
As grandmothers we have the wisdom and experience that comes with age; we are well aware of the challenges raising children here in Canada.
In Africa, those challenges are monumental.  Many of the African grandmothers, are unfortunately HIV+ as well. Too many suffer from isolation, loneliness and depression.  We want to support these amazing women who are resilient and brave in their struggle for a decent life for themselves and the children in their care.
Beautiful Creations for Sale
The Grassroot Grannies 'crafters' are very creative.  We make many different kinds of note cards, paint bird houses, create stained glass garden art, and sew infinity scarves, potato bakers, tooth fairy pillows, jewellery bags and much more. 
To see our creations  click here

GRAN's Hot Issues
GRAN is currently focusing on 3 major priorities
1. Access to Medicine
2. Education for All
3. Violence against Women

Grandmothers Advocacy Network - Mouvement de soutien des grands-meres, or GRAN is a independent, civil society organization dedicated to bringing about meaningful change that enhances the quality of life for grandmothers and children orphaned by AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa.  GRAN is a network of grandmothers and grand-others from coast-to-coast, advocating at the local and national levels. 

GRAN is a member of three Canadian coalitions: the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network, the Global Treatment Access Group and the Interagency Coalition on AIDS and Development, and routinely partner with other NGOs and CSOs to accomplish their work

For further information about the work of GRAN visit their website.

Did you know?  Only 10% of funds raised for the Grandmothers Campaign are used for administrative overhead.

To get in touch with a member of the Grassroot Grannies click here.

A huge milestone has been reached
The Grandmothers Campaign since 2006 has collectively raised close to $33 million  

Canadian grannies 
African grannies
How does the SLF decide what projects to fund? What about corrupt African governments?
• The SLF works directly at the grassroots level and supports only community-based projects. It does not fund through governments.
• All project requests received by the SLF are reviewed by specific SLF staff, who in turn will ask field officers on the ground in Africa to visit the project for review and assessment. Once a proposal is accepted the money goes directly from the SLF to the project’s bank account.
• All funded projects are checked to ensure that they have a bank account, sound financial systems and are a registered NGO with a functioning board of directors that includes women in management positions.
• Finally, all projects must fit into one of the 5 mandate areas: children affected by HIV/AIDS, Grandmothers, Home Based Health Care, Positive Living Associations, Sexual Violence and HIV/AIDS
Out of the Box

A group of very talented artists, called Out of the BoxFibre Artists hold an annual spring Fibre Fling, an event show-casing their creative products.  This year the group continued its support of the Stephen Lewis Foundation's Grandmothers Campaign with a very generous donation of $3,750.00 to the Grassroot Grannies.  We are grateful for this gift and look forward to partnering with them in the future. 
To learn more about this group click here.

Diane Thomson, Chair of the Grassroot Grannies, receiving a cheque for $3,750 from the Out Of The Box, Fibre Artists.