Friends of Grassroot Grannies
We appreciate your interest in the Grassroot Grannies and the work we do to support the 
Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign of the Stephen Lewis Foundation and 
the Grandmothers Advocacy Network GRAN

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Spring 2017
With warm regards,
Diane Thomson 
Grassroot Grannies

Stephen Lewis Foundation
Advocacy News
Grassroot Grannies Activities
The Grassroot Grannies are excited to start another year of fundraising for The Stephen Lewis Foundation.

On May 13th, 2017, 8 am to 1 pm, at 93 Knudson Drive, Kanata, we will be hosting our 11th annual Plant Sale and Market Place. We will have a bountiful array of perennials to offer, plus handmade stained glass garden art, and birdhouses. We will have our horticulturist available to answer any questions.

In our marketplace, we have our very popular previously-loved jewellery display, beautiful note cards and a raffle on some very interesting and useful articles. It is a great place to get this year's plants and gifts for Mother’s Day.
International awareness
Often as the Foundation staff travel across Canada they are frequently asked if the SLF was having any influence at the international level in amplifying the voices of African community-based organizations and ensuring additional support for them. 

While there is still a long way to go, the SLF wants to assure us that they are starting to see a shift in international awareness about the importance of supporting community-based organizations and grandmothers.  For the first time ever, the UN’s 2016 Political Declaration on HIV/AIDS included language about investing in holistic programming, supporting community-based organizations, and recognizing the importance of social protections for children and their caregivers.

Regional News 
On April 28, 2017 a historical Granny Gathering is taking place. Reflect Rejoice Rejuvenate is an event to acknowledge and celebrate the unique leadership and partnership between Canada’s senior women and the grandmothers of sub-Saharan Africa. This special Gathering has been 10 years in the making as it commemorates the 10th year anniversary of the Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign of the Stephen Lewis Foundation. 

The Grandmothers Campaign in Australia
There's no doubt about it -- the Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign is taking off in Australia! There are currently 5 official grandmothers groups in New South Wales and Victoria and there's interest in Western Australia, South Australia, Tasmania, and Queensland, as well.  

The Foundation is organizing a speaking tour around the country for May. If you have some Australian friends who are interested in getting involved in the Grandmothers Campaign and would want to attend the speaking tour, please email 

Older Women Lens
Early this year, GRAN announced the decision to look at its three issues, education, access to medicines and violence against women, through the lens of how they impact older women in sub Saharan Africa in the future.

A Fair Shot Campaign
Last year GRAN supported the Medicines Sans Frontiers (MSF) in its “A Fair Shot Campaign”. With over 400,000 signatures MSF went to the Pfizer and GSK head offices with the petition and were delighted when Pfizer announced late last year that it was reducing the price of the pneumonia vaccine to $9.30 per treatment per child for humanitarian organizations working in emergency situations. Thanks everyone!

Global Partnership for Education 
Looking to the future, GRAN is planning a new campaign to persuade the government to increase its contribution to the Global Partnership for Education in the next replenishment period. Education is key to achieving development, and influences all 17 of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), however in Sub-Saharan Africa, 55 million children and youth (ages 6-15) are out of school, 29 million are girls, and 50% of all primary classes have over 50 students. What if they were our precious grandchildren?

Plans are well under way for our Ride To Turn the Tide, and our Books and Breakfast Buffet, coming up in the Fall.
This event is organized by the Ottawa-Gatineau Region Grandmothers Network (O-GRGN).  

We will be welcoming Stephen and Ilana and two grannies from South Africa.  Mama Dalina Tywana and Eunice Mangwane will share with the Canadian grannies their stories of struggle and accomplishments. Peggy Edwards, a founder of the O-GRGN and active grandmother group leader, is our keynote speaker. Seven workshops will be offered as well. 

Close to 300 delegates and their guests have registered. 

Just over a month after that UN declaration, in July 2016, South African grandmothers marched to the doors of the International AIDS Conference to deliver their powerful statement demanding that the South African government and the international community guarantee the rights of grandmothers. Within days of that march, a senior minister in the South African government met with two grandmothers from the Gathering’s organizing committee, and has had a second follow-up meeting to receive their demands and further discuss the urgent needs of grandmothers in their country. 
It is these grandmothers in South Africa and the grandmothers in Uganda (who also gathered, marched, and delivered the Ugandan Grandmothers Statement  2015), and the grandmothers who will gather next year in Tanzania, and the thousands of others in sub-Saharan Africa, who are mobilizing for their rights. 

Spring is a wonderful time of year, new beginnings, new life, new energy. We wish you much happiness in this bright new season and sincere thanks for your continued support.
Canadian grannies 
African grannies