For over 50 years, we have worked in some of the most remote, hard-to-reach parts of Asia and Africa.
As a member of the Aga Khan Development Network, one of the world’s largest development organizations, we make long-term investments, from early childhood education to infrastructure. We build hospitals and schools. We work with people to serve their community and build their local economy. Our work impacts tens of millions in over 30 countries every year.
How do we do this? Through partnerships with people, businesses, local organizations, and governments. Our economic, social, and cultural investments ensure this commitment for generations to come.
Our work is driven by a firm belief in our shared humanity. The Aga Khan Foundation partners with communities around the world to build better futures together. Prosperity for all comes from harnessing the best from people of all walks of life. We believe that communities and societies are stronger when they are built on the shared vision of people from all backgrounds.
Meaningful change takes time, which is why we’ve been working in communities across Africa and Asia for decades—and will be there for generations to come. We invest in high-quality institutions such as clinics, banks and universities that anchor communities and provide opportunities for people to unlock their own promise. Rooted in local knowledge and ownership, and equipped with tools like education and health, people begin to realize their potential and drive change in their communities. Each generation grows stronger as more individuals benefit, and a transformation takes place. Civil society begins to thrive. People establish mutual trust and respect and, together, make decisions to lift up the community.
We are stronger together, and in a world where differences and conflicts divide, now is the time to build a better future together.
About the Aga Khan Development Network
Founded and chaired by His Highness the Aga Khan, the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) brings together a number of development agencies, institutions, and programs that work primarily in the poorest parts of Asia and Africa. Rooted in the belief in our shared humanity, the AKDN partners with communities across the globe to build better futures together. For nearly a century, the Network has transformed the quality of life for tens of millions of people around the world.
Poverty is a complex problem. AKDN believes that we make progress when we integrate the efforts of all sectors, not only helping communities increase incomes, but also partnering with them to improve the overall quality of life. A central feature of the AKDN’s integrated approach, or what we like to call multi-input area development, is to design and implement strategies in which our different agencies participate at the same time and in the same place to help those in need achieve a level of self-reliance. The Network brings together its sister agencies and partners to tackle local priorities, investing energies in the same place at the same time.
The promotion of pluralism has been an aim of many of AKDN’s programs, from the Aga Khan Museum in Canada to a reading program for children in Kyrgyzstan, from a project for the integration of immigrants in Lisbon to music schools in Afghanistan. AKDN’s ultimate aim is to nurture successful civil societies in which every citizen, irrespective of cultural, religious or ethnic differences, can realize his or her full potential. Prosperity for all comes from harnessing the best from people of all walks of life. We believe that communities and societies are stronger when they are built on the shared vision of people from all backgrounds. By creating a genuine connection and learning from each other, we can come together. In His Highness the Aga Khan’s own words: “The world we seek is not a world where difference is erased but where difference can be a powerful force for good, helping us to fashion a new sense of cooperation and coherence in our world and to build together a better life for all.”
IMPROVING THE QUALITY OF LIFE
AKDN’s overall goal is the improvement of the quality of life, which encompasses increasing the standards of living, health and education and a set of values and norms — which include pluralism and cultural tolerance, gender and social equity, civil society organization and good governance. AKDN has a holistic view of what progress is that goes beyond material benefits or only poverty alleviation, and encompasses a more rounded view of human experience and aspirations. Learn more about how we measure our impact on quality of life here.
Our work is driven by a firm belief in our shared humanity. Inspired by the Islamic ethic of compassion and responsibility to care for those less fortunate, the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) works for the common good of all citizens, regardless of background. We partner with communities across the world to build better futures together.
The ultimate aim of AKDN’s work is to help people move beyond dependency and become self-reliant. AKDN ethics include inclusiveness and pluralism. AKDN does not restrict its work to a particular community, country or region and aims to improve living conditions and opportunities for people regardless of their particular religion, race, ethnicity or gender. While different AKDN agencies focus on different mandates, all have the goal of creating sustainable livelihoods and building institutions that improve the quality of life for communities and individuals from all walks of life. Learn more here.