ActionAid's 50 Year History

Delve into our history spanning nearly 50 years as an international organisation, and 10 years since ActionAid Australia was founded.


Building on our 42 year legacy as Austcare, we joined the ActionAid federation, a global leader in rights based approaches supporting people living in poverty to drive change from the ground up.


We stood in solidarity with Palestinian women supporting 14 local organisations to advance women’s rights through public education on inheritance rights and grants for women to establish small businesses.


We launched our ground- breaking transitional justice work to support women survivors of violence in Uganda, Kenya and Democratic Republic of Congo to define justice from their own perspectives.


We launched a global campaign to make cities safer for women and responded to major emergencies in Vanuatu and Nepal supporting safe spaces for women and resourcing women’s leadership.


We secured a major win stopping Australian funding of a proposed Australian-run coal mine in South Africa that would undermine women’s rights, and we launched the Shifting the Power Coalition in the Pacific.


We drove gender responsive alternatives to climate change by supporting 8000 women in Vanuatu, Kenya and Cambodia to influence climate change policy from the local to the global and launched the Transform Trade for Women


We celebrated 10 years as ActionAid Australia, and ActionAid’s global impact on the lives of 25 million people in 45 countries.

ActionAid Australia was originally founded as Austcare, an NGO dedicated to defending rights of people seeking asylum and protection in emergencies. In 2009, Austcare joined the ActionAid Federation. 

Since then, ActionAid Australia has sharpened our expertise in human rights and poverty eradication, with a focus on supporting women in low-income communities around the world to campaign for their rights.

Over the years, we have firmly established ourselves in Australia as a global women’s rights organisation, supporting women living in poverty and exclusion around the world. We have also begun campaigning in Australia and across the globe to address the structural causes of injustice and inequality, using an intersectional feminist lens.

About our Human Rights Based Approach (HRBA)

Watch this video and find out more about the four elements that make up our approach to everything we do across programs, campaigns, and fundraising.

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