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Our History

Global Alliance for Development and Entrepreneurial Philanthropy Forum (GADEF International) in the past fifteen (15) years started as a youth philanthropy and grassroot community foundation that focused on promoting philanthropy and youth-led development in communities in Ghana and Africa as a whole.

GADEF International was envisioned to unleash the potentials of the youth and rural communities through philanthropy and social entrepreneurship to create a better future for the young people and their communities.

The Alliance started in Ghana in August, 2008 as Global Alliance for Development Foundation (GADeF). After six (6) years of operation expanded to South Africa and Burkina Faso. As part of the journey, the Foundation has provided legal and safety support, human resources, volunteer engagements and logistics support for international and local initiatives in Africa. This paved way for strategic collaboration and operations with other international philanthropy and social entrepreneurship support organizations, youth development partners and philanthropy ecosystem actors to implement local and global action projects in Africa.

Working as a youth philanthropy network and community builder, as part of its mission, GADEF International served as a co-convener for African Youth Philanthropy Network (AYPN) in 2015 in Arusha, Tanzania. 

Prior to the celebration of the Foundations’ 10th anniversary, GADEF International based on it track record, impact and success stories in Africa and beyond and was rebranded to operate at the global level as GADEF International. The Foundation then launched its strategic local and country level operations as an Alliance. Thus, GADEF Ghana, GADEF South Africa, GADEF Canada and GADEF USA. GADEF International serves as host for Global organizations like Giving Tuesday, NEXUS Global, Youth Climate Report , IDEAS For US, World Economic Forum Global Shapers Community (Sunyani & Goaso) in Ghana.

In the 10th anniversary partners’ impact mapping and learning sessions, members of GADEF Ghana decided to engage members of NEXUS Ghana, Giving Tuesday Ghana, AYPN-Ghana and others with interest in radical-local and community philanthropy to work together.

Members of the various platforms and networks saw the need for a unified voice and coalition to achieve a common purpose. Also, as an opportunity to synergize and coordinate philanthropy actions more effectively, and jointly advocate for an enabling environment for the growth of the philanthropy ecosystem in Ghana.

Through this efforts, Philanthropy Ghana was birthed to work as a community of Philanthropy Support Organisations (PSOs), philanthropy enablers and funders promoting and growing philanthropy in Ghana to be recognised as a credible agent of delivering national development.

Today, GADEF International has grown to become a global community of over 35 non-profit innovators and entrepreneurial philanthropy organisations (ie. social entrepreneurship, sustainable philanthropy and social investment organizations). The community has a growing number over 200 exceptional young people in the philanthropy and social impact innovations ecosystem in 18 countries.

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