FORWARD is an African Diaspora led women’s advocacy and support charity set up in 1985. Its work responds to the need to safeguard dignity and advance the sexual and reproductive health and human rights of African women and girls in UK and in Africa. It focuses on tackling female genital mutilation (FGM) and child and forced marriages, which disproportionately affects vulnerable girls.
It aims to engage, mobilise and transform public opinion and communities including decision-makers, women, young people and community leaders to speak out and take action against gender-based discrimination.
FORWARD UK campaigns and lobbies policy makers for enabling policies and entitlements; trains statutory agencies and community organisations to respond to the needs of women and girls; and undertakes research to enhance knowledge on emerging issues. It believes that working through partnerships to facilitate skill development will strengthen voice and participation at the local level to catalyse sustainable change. It also supports networking, resource sharing and collaboration at the European level to accelerate action to end FGM in Europe.