Celebrating a Momentous Evening – Almas Jiwani Foundation Officially Launched on Parliament Hill

OTTAWA, ONTARIO–(Marketwired – Sept. 21, 2016) – Editors Note: There are two photos associated with this press release.

It was a beautiful celebration as the Almas Jiwani Foundation (AJF) had its official launch at Parliament Hill. This momentous event took place at the launching ceremony of International Humanitarian Fashion Week, the world’s first official fashion week under the high patronage of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on September 10th, 2016.

The evening included a pre-recorded video address from Sophie Grégoire Trudeau, wife of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, a recognized activist, volunteer, and speaker on including self-esteem, gender empowerment, mental health, and equality issues relating to women and children. Almas Jiwani, Emeritus President of UN Women National Committee Canada and CEO of Almas Jiwani Foundation, presented the Foundation. The event coincided with the UNESCO International Day of Peace.

“AJF has identified a process to provide opportunities to girls and women in the developing world,” said Almas Jiwani. “Through various partnerships with several stakeholders and projects currently in the planning stage, we will provide sustainable energy to remote areas to give them access to power and communication systems that are currently unattainable. This power will allow them to power schools and clinics, and also operate filtration systems. AJF’s belief is that an educated woman will be an empowered, successful woman. Through provision of resources to allow these remote areas to flourish on their own, we will create the environment for growth and sustainability.

The historic evening included an opening ceremony with established Central Band of the Canadian Armed Forces, playing to some soul-stirring songs rendered by a live singer at an elite cocktail party. It was followed by the events that launched the fashion week, which included special remarks by Sebastien Goupil, Secretary General of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO (CCUNESCO), Danielle Kadjo and a few other dignitaries, including Almas Jiwani. During this speech, her second one for the evening, she said, “We women are honoured that designers feel inspired to create such masterpieces just because we exist.” She was also one of the recipients of The Humanitarian Awards that were given at the end of the function.

“The purpose of Almas Jiwani Foundation (AJF) resonates with me as a woman and a philanthropist. By supporting AJF, I feel like I am making a worthwhile contribution to the most vulnerable sections of my gender. In addition, it is evidence of how much influence she has as an individual and the things that she’s capable of doing. Her continual efforts to improve the status of women throughout the world, has greatly inspired me to support this noble cause. In the short time since its inception, AJF has established winning partnerships with several like-minded organizations and boasts a dedicated, hard-working team.” said Danielle Kadjo, Miss Universe Canada National Delegate at Parliament Hill, Ottawa.

“Congratulations on the launch of your organization at the International Humanitarian Fashion Week,” said Honourable Celina Caesar-Chavannes, Parliamentary Secretary to Justin Trudeau, the Prime Minister of Canada. “Almas Jiwani’s tireless work to improve the status of women around the world is an inspiration to all of us.” she added.

“Congratulations to Almas Jiwani Foundation on your launch. I look forward to following your mission to empower girls and women and all underprivileged and marginalized people across the globe.” said Honorable Kathleen Wynne, Premier of Ontario.

“Congratulations on your official launch. Proud that you have chosen Ottawa as your organization’s headquarters” said Jim Watson, Mayor of Ottawa.

We appreciate all of the wishes and support from those involved in both activism and government.” Said Jason Dupuis, Vice President, AJF. “It shows how important this cause and the methods we are using truly are.” He added.

Too many women in too many cultures are brought up to look to men for their financial needs. We want them to identify and tap their own potential to fulfill those needs. Only then will the dream of gender parity be realized.” said Pallavi Vachaspati, VP, Organizational Effectiveness, AJF.

There was a long line-up of aspiring attendees for the occasion, and quite a few had to leave disappointed because of extremely tight security and strictly regulated admission which was only possible through invitation. The evening featured the designs of seven international fashion designers as well as entertainers from around the world.


Empowering women and girls through focused projects that directly address gender equality, education, entrepreneurship, entertainment and energy rights. Through empowering women and girls in targeted areas, AJF hopes to improve societal and economic conditions in the developing world. Projects include providing sustainable energy to provide a better education, better living conditions and to create the environment where women can thrive as entrepreneurs in any region.


International Humanitarian Fashion Week is a global platform valuing the national fashion industries around the world, with the ultimate goal to act as a global voice to honor and promote human rights through artistic creations. The event aims to be a national celebration of cultural diversity and mutual understanding through artistic creations, but at the same time, a strong movement and humanitarian campaign to promote accessibility to education for all in Africa.

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