Moriom, 27, a mother of two who survived the Rana Plaza collapse. She accessed training and received a sewing machine from ActionAid's partner to help her back into work.

Annual report and accounts

What we achieved together in 2023

In 2023, we witnessed an increasingly unstable world with wars in DRC, Sudan, Ukraine and Israel-Gaza causing untold devastation to the lives and livelihoods of millions.

The number of refugees worldwide reached unprecedented levels, while the worst drought seen across East Africa in 40 years, induced by climate change, left over 20 million people facing severe hunger.

Together with partner organisations, we continued to respond to many serious humanitarian emergencies around the world, whether caused by conflict, the climate crisis or disasters.

In February 2023, a series of devastating earthquakes hit Türkiye and Syria, causing many people to lose their homes, livelihoods and loved ones. Our presence within the region, coupled with the remarkable generosity of our supporters, meant we were able to implement 11 partnerships with women-led and local organisations across Syria and Türkiye. In the aftermath of the earthquakes, ActionAid partners in the area, like Kareemat and Violet, focused their efforts on providing protection for women, safe shelter and mental health and medical support.

Elsewhere, ActionAid continues to support women and girls working to end gender-based violence. In Senegal, for example, we are championing those who are educating other women and girls in their communities about their rights. One of the ways we are doing this is by supporting the End Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting campaign, which is helping mobilise more women to stand against the practice.

As the crisis in Gaza reached its six-month mark, the UN estimated that 10,000 women were killed, amongst them an estimated 6,000 mothers who left more than 19,000 orphan children behind. Women who have survived have been displaced, widowed, and face starvation. ActionAid is doing everything we can to support those affected by this unprecedented conflict.

Throughout 2023 and now, ActionAid continues to place the rights, leadership and voices of women, girls and their movements at the forefront of everything we do.

We are committed to continuing our anti-racism and decolonisation work to further support and fund women’s rights organisations (WROs) and women-led organisations (WLOs) that are helping their communities adapt, respond and succeed.

2023 in numbers

Committed givers raised
towards our work on women's and girls' rights

was donated by supporters to the Gaza Crisis appeal

More than
new supporters in the UK signed up to give a regular monthly gift

Leading the response to the earthquake in Syria

In northwest Syria, ActionAid’s local partner, Violet, reached thousands of survivors in need of food, water and shelter, as well as providing protection services, mental health support and safe spaces for women and girls experiencing trauma.

Along with individual counselling, the safe spaces held awareness sessions on topics such as the prevention of sexual abuse and exploitation, stress and trauma and legal rights for women and girls.

Sujoud, 23, has been working with Violet in northwest Syria for a year and has been a key part of the emergency response. She works in a newly opened safe space and supports women and girls to take part in those awareness sessions designed to keep them safe from gender-based violence and exploitation.

Violet is just one example of how our partner organisations are leading the response to this humanitarian crisis.

In crisis

ActionAid responded to
separate countries or territories facing conflicts or disasters in 2023

ActionAid and our partners reached more than
people with support in Ukraine,Poland and Romania

More than
people were supported with humanitarian relief efforts in 2023 by ActionAid

Power of partnerships: the women-led community-based protection toolkit

In early 2023, ActionAid rolled out the 'Women-Led Community-Based Protection Toolkit' in collaboration with women in Kenya, Burundi, Rwanda, Ethiopia and Somaliland.

The toolkit provides practical guidance for ActionAid staff, local partner organisations and women from local communities facing humanitarian crises and protection risks.

Following a series of workshops in Burundi, Rwanda, Ethiopia and Somaliland in 2023, we’re seeing more positive outcomes from this initiative.

For example, in Burundi, the toolkit has supported a more cohesive movement of women’s groups working together to identify and prevent the causes of trauma for women and girls in the area.

Our partnership with People’s Postcode Lottery has made this work possible. In 2023, we received £3.1million from funds raised by players that have helped us support local women to lead emergency responses and stand against violence in their community.

In partnership

people were trained in gender-based rights in three tea-producing communities in Kenya with Ethical Tea Partnership

was raised by players of People’s Postcode Lottery to support our work combatting violence and responding to emergencies

of women trained in sustainable agriculture in Ghana established a new agroecology business, or improved an existing one

Supporting farming projects in Burundi

Around the world, agriculture is not only providing a crucial source of income for women but is offering independence, solidarity and an opportunity to build a more secure future.

In Burundi, agriculture is the main source of livelihood for over 80% of the population. But, climate change and land scarcity has negatively impacted agricultural production especially for small-hold farmers who don’t have sufficient means to cope.

The majority of these farmers have small lands and they fail to produce enough crops because they don’t have fertilisers to improve the quality of their soil.

But with ActionAid's backing, farming cooperatives in Burundi are helping women provide for themselves and their families.

Supported by ActionAid, local solidarity groups operate a loan programme allowing women to borrow capital to start a business at a low interest and by providing them with small scale livestock, most notably goats or pigs which are easy to raise, and also generate quick income for families because they are easy to sell.

In solidarity

people signed our petition to get world banks to divest from fossil fuels and harmful agribusiness

was raised through general donations and My Body Is Mine merchandise sales at Latitude festival

was raised for the earthquake in Morocco

Bringing women to the heart of disaster readiness and response

Ysnelle Jean, 36, is a first responder, trained by ActionAid to take vital steps to help her community when disaster strikes.

In August 2021, a powerful earthquake struck the south-west of Haiti. It affected 800,000 people, killing 2,248 and injuring more than 12,700. Immediately after the earthquake, Ysnelle jumped into action.

"After the earthquake, people were very traumatised. I remember one lady who lost her house...She was in shock when she saw her house. I took time to talk to her so she could understand that even [if] the house is destroyed, she’s alive, which matters more.” 

Find out more about Haiti

Download previous annual reports

Annual report 2022

Annual report 2022
annual report 21 cover

Annual report 2021

Annual report 2021

Annual report 2020

Annual report 2020
Top image: Moriom, 27, a mother of two who survived the Rana Plaza collapse. She accessed training and received a sewing machine from ActionAid's partner to help her back into work. Fabeha Monir/ActionAid

Page updated 5 July 2024