About us

About us

Breaking the cycle of poverty, sparking a transformative change, improving quality of life. We know we are stronger together.

Breaking the cycle of poverty, sparking a transformative change, improving quality of life. We know we are stronger together.

About the Aga Khan Foundation

Reliable hospitals, schools and roads. Clean water and affordable energy. Flourishing economies. People working to shape their own futures. These are the cornerstones of all thriving societies. Without them, people remain locked in a cycle of poverty, clinging to inadequate services and dependent on short-lived aid. 

The Aga Khan Foundation is breaking the cycle.

As a member of the Aga Khan Development Network, one of the world’s leading poverty solutions networks, the Aga Khan Foundation helps people build better futures. Working in partnership with community, business and government leaders, we make long-term investments in innovative programmes that improve quality of life, from bringing electricity to remote villages in Afghanistan, to training thousands of nurses across East Africa, to restoring the cultural treasures of the Silk Road. We invest in high-quality institutions such as clinics, banks and universities that anchor communities and equip people with the tools they need most, whether it’s access to health care, financial credit or quality education.

With these elements in place, people can begin to unlock their own potential, sparking a transformative change. Civil society thrives. Municipalities deliver higher quality public services. Businesses take off, generating new jobs and strengthening industries. Poverty is a complex problem, yet we make progress when we integrate the efforts of leaders from both the public and private sectors, from the community level to the multinational level.

For almost 50 years, our Foundation has implemented thousands of projects in 30 countries around the world, reaching millions of people every year. Meaningful change takes time, which is why we’ve been working throughout regions in Africa and Asia for decades—and will be there for generations to come. Our commitment to building a better future spans across national borders, transcends language and religion, and breaks through siloed sectors. We partner with a wide range of change-makers from around the world to deliver lasting and positive results.

At the Aga Khan Foundation, we know we are stronger together.

The Aga Khan Foundation in the UK

Established in 1973, the UK office of the Aga Khan Foundation supports the broader Aga Khan Development Network by forming strategic partnerships with UK and European institutional partners including government agencies, policy institutes, corporations, foundations, NGOs, universities, associations and professional networks and mobilising resources.

AKF also serves as a learning institution for programme enhancement, policy dialogue, education, and disseminating best practices in international development. Through its series of events and talks, AKF helps raise awareness about particular issues with the development community and with the UK public.

About the Aga Khan Development Network

The Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) was founded by His Highness, the Aga Khan. The Aga Khan is Chairman of the Board of AKDN, which is committed to breaking the cycle of poverty and advancing positive change that lasts for generations to come.

AKDN build’s quality institutions – clinics, banks and universities – that anchor communities and provide them opportunities to unlock their potential. AKDN designs and implements innovative programmes that improve quality of life and can be replicated elsewhere in the world. Our approach touches a wide range of investments critical to human development, from early childhood education to health and infrastructure to green space preservation.

We believe that communities and societies are stronger when they are built on the vision and collaboration of people from all different backgrounds. Our work is driven by the belief in our shared humanity and the firm conviction that we all have purpose.

The AKDN has agreements and protocols with the numerous countries and organisations including: Afghanistan, the Asian Development Bank, Bangladesh, Canada, Egypt, the European Commission, France, Germany, India, Ivory Coast, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kyrgyz Republic, Mali, Mozambique, Norway, Pakistan, Portugal, Russia, Syria, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Uganda, United Kingdom, the United Nations (United Nations Development Programme and World Health Organisation) and the World Bank.

More information about AKDN can be found here.

Our values

The work of the Aga Khan Foundation and the Aga Khan Development Network is grounded in a set of universal ethics. All AKDN agencies have the goal of creating sustainable livelihoods and building institutions that improve the quality of life for communities and individuals. Our core values are:

  • Respect for human dignity
  • Compassion and solidarity with the less fortunate
  • Self-reliance
  • Pluralism: tolerance, openness, and understanding toward other peoples’ cultures, values and faiths
  • The right to participate and determine local priorities Service to humanity through volunteerism