Afro Women and Youth foundation


In recent years, the landscape of business and entrepreneurship has witnessed a remarkable rise in women-led organizations, with women breaking barriers and making their mark in various industries. Canada, known for its commitment to diversity and equality, is home to numerous women-led organizations that are driving innovation, making a difference, and inspiring future generations. In this article, we celebrate the achievements and highlight the stories of thirteen exceptional women-led organizations in Canada

1. Canadian Women’s Foundation

As one of the largest women’s foundations in Canada, the Canadian Women’s Foundation works to address gender inequality and support women’s economic empowerment, ending gender-based violence, and promoting girls’ rights. They invest in community programs and initiatives that create lasting change.

2. Women of Influence

Women of Influence is a platform that celebrates and supports the advancement of women in leadership positions. Through their events, media, and community initiatives, they amplify the stories and achievements of influential women across various sectors.

3. Women of Rubies Inc.

Women of Rubies is not only a women’s platform dedicated to highlighting female business owners worldwide but also a boutique communications firm providing comprehensive public relations solutions in events, marketing, reputation management, media relations, and strategy. Established by Esther Ijewere, a highly acclaimed media personality and public relations strategist, this platform has successfully showcased and celebrated the achievements of more than 5000 women globally.


CIBWE, which stands for Canada International Black Women Excellence, is a distinguished Canadian organization dedicated to celebrating, empowering, and advancing the achievements of Black women across the country and beyond. Founded on the principles of equality, inclusivity, and empowerment, CIBWE strives to create a platform that not only recognizes the remarkable contributions of Black women but also provides them with the tools and resources they need to thrive.

This dynamic organization serves as a beacon of hope and inspiration for Black women, offering support in various aspects of their lives, from education and entrepreneurship to leadership and community engagement. CIBWE believes in the power of unity and collaboration, bringing together diverse voices and talents to foster positive change and break down barriers.

With a commitment to excellence and a focus on creating opportunities for personal and professional growth, CIBWE continues to be a driving force in promoting the success and well-being of Black women in Canada and making their voices heard on the global stage. Through its initiatives, events, and advocacy, CIBWE shines a spotlight on the outstanding achievements of Black women while paving the way for a more inclusive and equitable future.

5. Total Mom Inc

Total Mom Inc. Canada is an organization that focuses on supporting and empowering mothers in Canada. It is a platform that provides resources, community, and opportunities for personal and professional growth for moms.

Total Mom Inc. offers a wide range of services and programs to cater to the diverse needs of mothers. They provide educational resources, workshops, and events that cover various topics such as parenting, career development, self-care, and entrepreneurship. Through these offerings, they aim to equip moms with the knowledge, skills, and support they need to thrive in all aspects of their lives.

Additionally, Total Mom Inc. provides networking opportunities and a sense of community for mothers. They facilitate connections among moms, creating a space where they can share their experiences, offer support, and build meaningful relationships. The organization understands the importance of a strong support system and strives to create a community that celebrates and uplifts moms.

Total Mom Inc. also collaborates with businesses and brands to create opportunities for moms to pursue their passions and interests. They connect moms with brands that align with their values and provide platforms for them to showcase their talents and expertise.

6.  The Canadian Association of Women Executives & Entrepreneurs (CAWEE)

CAWEE is a prominent organization that supports and advocates for women executives and entrepreneurs in Canada. They offer networking opportunities, educational programs, and resources to enhance the professional growth and success of women in business.

7. Women’s Entrepreneurship Knowledge Hub (WEKH)

WEKH is a national organization that promotes research, knowledge-sharing, and collaboration to advance women’s entrepreneurship in Canada. They work towards creating a supportive ecosystem for women entrepreneurs through partnerships and initiatives across the country.

8. Women in Communications and Technology (WCT)

WCT is a national organization focused on advancing women’s leadership and inclusion in the communications and technology sectors. They provide mentorship, professional development programs, and networking opportunities to empower women and promote diversity in these industries.

The range of services offered by Women of Rubies encompasses various areas, including product launches, influencer programs, PR strategy development, media training, event management, experiential marketing, and corporate communications support.

9. Black Mom Connection

Founded by award-winning event planner and creative storyteller Tanya Hayles, Black Moms Connection started with a group of 12 women in Toronto looking to create a safe space to ask culturally relevant questions and get culturally relevant answers. Since its inception, this once local grassroots organization has evolved into an online global village of more than 16,000 people with chapters in a variety of North American cities and in Asia. As a registered non-profit organization, Black Moms Connection offers culturally relevant tools and resources to empower and educate Black women. Workshops and sessions range from special needs education to financial literacy, encouraging mothers to increase the social, emotional, financial, and well-being of the Black family.

10. Afro Women and Youth Foundation

 Afro Women and Youth Foundation Canada is an organization dedicated to empowering and uplifting Afro women and youth in Canada. The foundation focuses on addressing the unique challenges and barriers faced by Afro women and youth, and works towards creating opportunities for their personal and professional growth.

Through various programs and initiatives, the foundation aims to promote education, entrepreneurship, leadership development, and community engagement among Afro women and youth. They provide resources, mentorship, and support networks to help individuals enhance their skills, explore career pathways, and achieve their full potential.

11. Women’s Executive Network (WXN)

WXN is Canada’s leading organization dedicated to advancing and celebrating the achievements of women in business. They provide networking opportunities, leadership development programs, and recognition through prestigious awards to inspire and empower women professionals.

12. TechGirls Canada

TechGirls Canada is a national organization that advocates for diversity and gender equality in the tech industry. They work to create inclusive environments and provide resources, mentorship, and support for women and girls pursuing careers in technology.

13. Black Women In Motion

Founded by Monica Samuel, Black Women in Motion is a Toronto-based, youth-led organization that empowers and supports the advancement of Black women, gender-non-confirming, and non-binary survivors of gender-based violence. As an educator, community builder, social entrepreneur and DEI consultant, Monica has spent the past decade focusing on anti-oppression, equity, mental health, sex positivity, and consent. She’s known for her creation of culturally centred spaces for learning, unlearning, and self-expression.

Programs include the Black Youth Employment Assistance Program, Black Peer Education Network, Love Offering Community Emergency Relief Fund, and other wellness initiatives, internships, and workshops. The organization offers a number of ways for interested parties to get involved from monetary donations, corporate partnerships, non-monetary gifts, and volunteer opportunities. While this organization is Toronto-based, they’re bringing education and community to a much broader audience.

14. Native’s Women Association of Canada

The Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC) is a National Indigenous Organization representing the political voice of Indigenous women, girls, and gender diverse people in Canada, inclusive of First Nations Peoples on and off reserve, status and non-status, disenfranchised, Métis, and Inuit.

NWAC was founded to enhance, promote, and foster the social, economic, cultural, and political well-being of Indigenous women. An aggregate of Indigenous women’s organizations from across the country, NWAC engages in national and international advocacy aimed at legislative and policy reforms that promote equality for Indigenous women, girls, Two-Spirit and gender diverse people, including LGBTQIA+ people.

NWAC works on a variety of issues such as employment, labour and business, health, violence prevention and safety, justice and human rights, environment, early learning childcare, and international affairs.

15. The Period Purse

As most good stories do, this one started with one woman and her desire to help. Wondering how those experiencing homelessness would gain access to period products, Jana Girdauskas, a teacher and mom, filled one purse with menstrual supplies and other hygiene items, ready for someone in need. She put a request out on Facebook and within a month she received 350 purses filled with donated products. That was 2017. Today, The Period Purse is Canada’s first and only registered charity dealing with menstrual equity and has chapters across the country.

They’ve donated more than 2.5 million period products since their inception. With a focus on reducing the stigma surrounding periods through education and advocacy, The Period Purse provides a number of opportunities for those interested in volunteering their time, items or financial support to the cause. With the announcement in Ontario around making period products available for free to students in schools, period equity has certainly been top-of-mind.

The rise of women-led organizations in Canada is a testament to the incredible talent, resilience, and determination of women entrepreneurs and leaders.

The thirteen organizations highlighted in this article are just a snapshot of the diverse and impactful initiatives being spearheaded by women across the country.

Through their visionary leadership, these organizations are breaking barriers, inspiring change, and creating a more inclusive and equitable society. As we celebrate their achievements, let us continue to support and uplift women-led organizations, amplifying their voices and ensuring their continued success.

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Afro Women and Youth Foundation, a nonprofit committed to the empowerment and leadership development of vulnerable African women will be 1 in a few days and to celebrate their 1st year Anniversary, they will be extending some support to 10 women who have experienced/experiencing Gender-Based violence (GBV) in Lagos, Nigeria, by giving them soft business grant between 20-50k
Please note that only those who have officially reported their cases are eligible to apply.
Instagram Pages to follow; @afrowyf, @adebolaadefioye1, @grittyeducators
Image credit: ebony.com

There are so many Nigerians living in the diaspora making us proud, Adebola Adefioye is one of them. She is not only raising the flag high, but also empowering other women while at it.

She  is a proven resilient woman whose work with women and youth span over 10 years. She coordinated the “For Girls Only” program at The Real Woman Foundation, Lagos, Nigeria for some years. Aside from her natural interest in the social sector, she has also deployed professional services in the childcare sector. She is a Registered Early Childhood Educator in Ontario and an alumna of Coady International Institute where she studied Advancing Women Leadership in Conflict Transformation, Peacebuilding and Community Development.

Adebola is a Certified Speaker, Coach and Trainer with The John Maxwell Team and she founded Afro Women and Youth Foundation, an organization she started to support the holistic development of vulnerable African women, girls, and youth. This is where she deploys her advocacy strengths and leadership skills to deconstruct the enormous, socially constructed injustices in the society while empowering, mentoring, and developing leadership skills of marginalized populations.

Adebola is married with 3 adorable children. Her social entrepreneurship and educational commitment work got recognition recently as she was named the recipient for the 2020 HELIX Female Entrepreneurship Award and Walker Wood Foundation Early Childhood Educator Award at Seneca College, Ontario, Canada. She was also nominated as a Woman of Inspiration at Universal Women’s Network, Canada.

She is a professional member of the College of Early Childhood Education (CECE), Ontario, Family Support Institute of Ontario (FSIO) and Association of Early Childhood Educators, Ontario (AECEO) Canada.

Childhood Influence

Yes, growing up prepared me for what I am doing now. Growing up was good until things turned around when my father had to retire earlier than planned from his banking job in Nigeria because the bank wanted to recruit young graduates. Our family’s financial situation changed quickly because we are a polygamous family and the available funds were no longer enough for all. I had to drop out of the University of Ado-Ekiti and struggled a lot by myself after that event but all the experiences helped me to build resilience and now I can relate when I see young girls going through a difficult situation.

Inspiration behind  Afro Women and Youth foundation

I have always known that women and girls are very vulnerable, and as a new immigrant, I faced some difficulties. I experience subtle racism regularly and my daughter experienced it very hard from Grade 2-3 because she was the only black girl in class. I kept coaching her on how best to handle it. Eventually, she built enough confidence and she started speaking up whenever necessary. Last year, she won the award for Most Confident Child in grade 5. My personal experience and my daughter’s inspired me to start the Afro Women and Youth Foundation.  At AWYF, we currently run monthly empowerment events for marginalized African women, girls and youth in Toronto, Canada. Some of our past sessions include (The Resilient Woman, Be The Best, How to Handle Peer Pressure, Integration in Canada Positive Parenting Strategies etc).

 The journey been so far?

It has been very fulfilling. Helping others makes me and my team very happy. We just hope the people we are helping now will someday extend the love to other people.

Being the recipient  of the 2020 HELIX Female Entrepreneurship Award , and Several notable Awards in Canada

I felt very good. I worked very hard as a club leader, mentor, and tutor to other students at the college and also support new African immigrants in my community. I am very happy and thankful.

Challenges of being a Social Entrepreneur

Getting sustainable funds to implement my transformative ideas has been the most challenging part of my work. This is because we are a new nonprofit. I am very grateful for the individuals and organizations that currently support my work and very hopeful for more support and collaborations.

 3 Women Who Inspire you to be better and why?

My mother is my greatest inspiration. I watched her return to school after 6 children and moved herself out of dependency to becoming an independent woman. She has also faced many other challenges but she remains strong.

Pastor Adenike Adeyemi is another person I strongly admire and working at her organization (The Real Woman Foundation) for 4 years as the “For Girls Only” program coordinator further prepared me for the social developmental work I do today.

Mrs. Omowale Ogunrinde, the executive director of Field of Skills and Dreams, Lagos is another great inspiration to me. She employed me as Hat & Beads Trainer after I dropped out of the University and moved to Lagos from Ibadan. I watched her every day at work as she runs her business with strong principles.

Bridging the gap between my work in Canada and Nigeria

 We recently started virtual training that is open to women and youth living in Nigeria and other parts of Africa. We just concluded a Self-Care training for educators last month and people joined from Burundi and Nigeria. We also did another one for youth and all who attended both events were given cash gifts by a sponsor as COVID-19 relief.

AWYF will be celebrating the 1st anniversary in September and to mark the event, we will be launching an Interest-free small business loan for Gender-Based Violence (GBV) victims who have established small businesses. This is coming with the help of a sponsor who is interested in fighting GBV in Nigeria. This intervention program will be delivered in partnership with Attitude Development International (ADI) and only those who have officially reported their experience and have started their businesses will be eligible for the funds. These are things Nigerian women can benefit from.

 Being a Social Entrepreneur,  Research Assistant at Seneca College, a Mom and wife, and managing it all

I am a strong-willed person and I think multi-tasking is one of my gifts. I also have a very supportive husband who is equally a social entrepreneur and believes in women’s empowerment.

The pandemic has made a lot of Nigerian women vulnerable, What coping mechanism advice would you give to these women at a time like this.

 I would recommend regular breathing exercises. Every woman should regularly make a list of things they are thankful for as those can bring great joy in this difficult time. Also, it is important to hang out with good friends who make you happy. It could be a physical or virtual connection, but we all need that sense of connection at this time. Lastly, I’ll say, ask for help when you need it. I must also add that women should please speak out when experiencing any form of violence.

 Being  a Woman of Rubies?

I have had many negative experiences over the years and through mentorship, coaching and personal development, I have learned how to consistently bounce back and thrive in the face of adversity. Most importantly, helping others to do the same is what makes me a Woman of Rubies.

Speaking, Training, Mentoring and Coaching Services

You can contact Adebola if you need her to speak at your event or interested in her mentorship/coaching programs. She also provides Qualitative professional Early Childhood Educator training to schools, religious or any child-focused organizations.

Website: www.afrowyf.org


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