About Us


Organizational Goals:

To promote gender equity, equality and women empowerment in Nigeria
To influence policy-making and encourage partnerships which work for gender response and people- centered development.
To facilitate and foster alliance which promote equitable and sustainable development in Nigeria.

Mission Statement:

To foster critical alliances and work for social justice in Nigeria through a gender based development approach.

GADA was started in 1994 by Nkoyo Toyo, Barbara Riley (Canadian) and Eka Williams. The decision to establish GADA followed the unimpressive quality of participation and representation of Nigeria’s official delegation to the Dakar regional meeting of the Fourth World Conference on Women. The Nigerian delegation was under the dominant influence of the first Lady who provided little space for alternative perspectives. Efforts to re-establish a credible platform for civil society activism around issues of women (and men) became the impetus for setting up an organization committed not only issue of social justice in Nigeria but working to promote alliances within civil society and with supportive state structures. By 1996, GADA was able to rally women (and men) at a first ever National Political Summit for Women in Nigeria, to review their issues from the perspective of civil society actors and produce an alternative agenda and platform for action.

Targets and Beneficiaries:
GADA’s work target policy-makers, women and men in public life, civil society actors, categories of marginalized persons (that often include women) and those poorly represented in national decision-making in Nigeria. These categories of persons and the issues they represent are often subsumed by ethnic, religious and political bickering which diminishes their importance. With the rather unsatisfactory operational environment for their participation, these interests within civil society need to band together if they are to influence policy-making GADA works with such allies to build our national and national groups in order to exert influence at various levels of decision-making. Alliance building is an ongoing process and an essential part of GADA’s mission to foster credible and committed partners that can expand its outreach and strengthen its networking capacities. GADA’s mandate, its history of national mobilization and cross-national sensitization has put it in a unique position to access a pool of existing resources to enhance it impact.

GADA has a seven-member Board of Directors, three technical committees of which the Chairpersons are board members and three operational offices. The three technical committees are those of Management, Programs and Research, while the offices are located in Lagos, Calabar and Abuja. The Management Committee is headed by the Executive Director who is also a member of the Board of Directors. The Board of Directors meets twice yearly to review the performance of the organization, address issues of funding, determine whether programms are consistent with the organization’s mission, and assess the work of Committees.

Committees seek the endorsement of the Board to operate but, this is secured through an annual strategic meeting where programs are presented discussed and adopted. Other matters for decision-making go through Committees. The Lagos office is the advocacy and publication arm of the organization. The GADA Centre for Training and Development Activities (CeTDA) in Calabar undertakes training and community projects. And also, the organization’s Research and Policy influencing office is in Abuja. Finally Port Harcourt office has a strong focus on the livelihoods and securities of the people of the Niger Delta. GADA is a non-membership organization and has a total of 30 full and part time employees and volunteers. Most of GADA’s work is done in association with other groups in civil society.

To participate in the emergence of effective Coalitions that transverse different issues, geographic locations and interests.

To support the building of a National institutional frameworks linked to popular aspirations and negotiate appropriate intervention for change.

To identify ways to enhance the working of state funded institutions both in terms of their accountability and effectiveness.

To assist the development mechanisms of civil society organizations (CSO) and equip them to act as positive agents of change.


GADA’s work focus in Port Harcourt is in the areas of improving livelihoods, peace and securities in the Niger Delta. GADA through its interventions is focused on promoting human rights, gender Equality and Equity, Social justice and Sustainable Development.


In the areas of conflict Resolution and peace building, GADA has carried out extensive activities with women in several communities in Rivers State with funding from Institute for Democracy in South Africa (IDASA). Notable from amongst them is GADA’s peace-building effort in Okirika, Rivers State, using women in faith based groups. These intervention to involve women in the faith based groups served as a catalyst to motivate others to mobilize and identify ways of ensuring lasting peace in Okirika land.

GADA has also facilitated in series of trainings for women on Conflict Resolution /Early Warning Signals and Preventive Intervention for OTI/USAID with Itsekiri and Ijaw Women in Delta State. IFESH/CALM Project in Rivers State and SDN/Keitbetkache for Biseni women in Bayelsa State.

GADA recognizes the need to strengthen the capacities of women for peace building and as such seeks to carry out a culture of peace campaigns involving trained women peace advocates to re-orient the young people and promote positive values in schools and public institutions.


GADA carried out an extensive training programme in Otusega and Erema communities on Human rights instruments and applications. This project was designed to support women to play a more proactive role in the in decision making processes of the community and the Niger delta as a whole. It was also aimed at identifying and documenting the roles and obstacles faced by women in upholding their socio political rights, educating women in their socio-political rights through building advocacy skills of women within the communities and promoting and popularizing Female leadership within the community. The outcome of these initiatives was the formation of Women Voices Network (WOVON)