It is with great sorrow that the Board and Staff of the African Women’s Development Fund (AWDF) informs our friends and stakeholders of the death of Joana Silochina Foster, a co-founder of AWDF. She passed away peacefully on Saturday, 5 November 2016, after a long battle with cancer.
A long time African feminist and social justice activist, Joana was a lawyer specializing in Women’s Civil and Political Rights and Immigration. One of the many African activists who used the Fourth World Conference on Women (Beijing, 1995) as a springboard to accelerate the ongoing work of women’s rights in Africa, Joana was also one of the founders of the Gender and Human Rights Documentation Centre (Gender Centre) in Ghana. During her career, she worked in various parts of Africa as well as Europe, most notably as the Regional Coordinator of Women in Law and Development in Africa (WILDAF), Ghana Country Director of CUSO (a Canadian not for profit organisation) and later as the Senior Gender Advisor to the United Nations Mission in Liberia. She served on a number of organisational Boards, including the Child Poverty Action Group in the UK.
Joana will be missed for her passion, commitment, vivacity and joyous spirit. She will be remembered for the impact of her activism and the variety of social justice initiatives she inspired, developed and made happen. She leaves behind a legacy that will be remembered for as long as AWDF and the Gender Centre remain hubs of feminist activism.
Our deepest condolences go to Joana’s family and friends as they mourn the passing of a great spirit.
Dearest Joana, rest in peace.