Compassion Rooted in Experience
Love Forward is a volunteer-based nonprofit organization whose founders experienced abuse and abandonment during their youth. A combination of compassion, support, and a higher education changed the direction of their lives.
Our commitment is to love forward by creating opportunities for other abused and abandoned youth. By providing women with a higher education and individual support after they leave residential care programs in developing countries, we help them transition successfully to their adult lives, realize their potential, and pursue their dreams.
By relying on committed volunteers and partner organizations in the countries where we work, nearly all of the funds we receive are directed to the support of our students.
A Future Free From Poverty and Abuse
Love Forward supports young women after they leave orphanages and other residential care programs so they can pursue a higher education at a local university or other post-secondary institution. Our program covers most of the living and educational expenses of our students while they pursue their degree, until they graduate and become self-sufficient.
In the countries where we work, women leaving an orphanage or similar program are at the highest risk and greatest disadvantage. They have very few, if any, economic opportunities that would lift them out of extreme poverty. As a result, they may receive years of care after being abandoned and abused, only to be pulled back into a life of poverty and abuse. Our commitment is to change the future, both for them and for future generations.
Love Forward currently operates programs in Nicaragua, the Philippines, and Kolkata, India, and plans to start a program in Afghanistan.
Advancing Gender Equality and Reducing Violence Against Women
Love Forward recognizes the relationship between education and gender-based violence. Violence against girls negatively impacts their access to education and progress in school. This can become cyclic, as young women who age-out of an orphanage or similar program, who come from backgrounds of extreme poverty and abuse and lack the support of an immediate family, are at high risk of situations that lead to gender-based violence and exploitation.
Recognizing these inequalities, we decided to focus our resources and impact on empowering young women who are at the greatest risk - those leaving residential care programs in developing countries. Through higher education and enhanced economic opportunities, which lead to financial self-sufficiency, we seek to mitigate the impact that gender bias, abuse, and exploitation might otherwise have on the quality and direction of their lives.
All of the students depicted in photos on this website are past, current, or prospective participants in the Love Forward program.