VOICE for Women and Girls






Project Details

VOICE for Women and Girls

Project Overview

The VOICE project is a seven-year initiative that is aimed at strengthening the performance of developing country partner (DCP) organizations to advance gender equality and economic empowerment of 50,000 women and men from marginalized communities, in particular young women (target: 60% women and girls), in Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Senegal, and Malawi. VOICE will harness the knowledge, capacity, and expertise of 245 skilled Canadian volunteers (235 North-South volunteers and 10 E-Volunteers) and 28 South-North volunteers to assist Developing Country Partners (DCP) improve their performance, advocating for gender equality, and implementing more sustainable, innovative, and inclusive initiatives of services, particularly for women. Women are more vulnerable than men, as they face gender-based discrimination, largely as a result of deeply rooted stereotypes, cultural norms, and practices.

Throughout the five project countries, vulnerable groups, in particular women and girls, are experiencing various barriers which reduce their economic and social well-being.  The project will strive to address these barriers and challenges faced by women and girls over its 7-year duration and will advance initiatives that specifically focus on Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women and Girls, and Growth that Works for Everyone.

CDF’s partnerships across Canada will allow participation of both anglophone and francophone volunteers from a considerable network of industry associations, co-operatives, credit unions, employers, academic and training institutions, including some 8 million members. Collaboration with these institutions and their staff, students, or alumni will enable the project to directly engage approximately 36,000 co-operative employees through the engagement efforts of volunteers post-deployment, and to engage approximately 350,000 members of the co-operative community and general public through general engagement events and activities including social and traditional media promotion, with 273 volunteers undertaking an engagement to sustain the Project’s development impact.

The image shows three graphic elements: a half of a red maple leaf to the left of the graphic, and to the right of the graphic are the words, “In partnership with” and the Canada Wordmark.


VOICE will utilize CDF Canada’s expertise in the cooperative and credit union sectors to address challenges and empower women and communities through interventions such as:

The Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF) is a key component of the VOICE Project. The aim of the fund is to facilitate innovative feminist approaches to the inclusion of marginalized persons, including women, people with disabilities, minorities, indigenous groups, and LGBTQ2 groups, into economic development and financial inclusion. Volunteers will be required to collaborate with local partners on application designs to foster buy-in and embed knowledge and encouraged to reach out to diverse networks in Canada and in the target country to integrate increased sustainability and future revenue streams for the project.

Project Outputs and Outcomes

In the seven years of the project, CDF Canada and partners will improve women and girls’ economic well-being in project countries. We aim to reach 30,000 vulnerable women and 20,000 men.

Our aim is to engage trained Canadian volunteers to create enabling settings for mainstream FIAP principles, i.e., integrating gender-responsive practices across sectors. Secondly, we will also train country partners to integrate the principles and approaches in the FIAP action areas as per their local context. This approach will provide support and uplift the vulnerable communities, especially women and girls.

Sustainable Development Goal

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