Welcome to the Institute For The Advancement Of Aboriginal Women


The Institute for the Advancement of Aboriginal Women (IAAW) recognizes the role, value, and achievements of Aboriginal women in society and raises awareness about the challenges and obstacles faced by Aboriginal women.

Major strategies to improve opportunities for Aboriginal women include: training and support services to achieve social inclusion; empowerment and independence; and economic and social security.

The IAAW is a non-profit organization with a head office in Edmonton with outreach to several Chapter communities in Alberta. The Institute for the Advancement of Aboriginal Women values the support and partnerships of its 500 individual and corporate members.

Esquao is the stylized version for the Cree word for woman and is copyrighted.

To honour and ensure long lasting cooperative relationships, IAAW operates on the following philosophy:

Open and transparent decision-making processes;

Building the capacity and independence of both individuals and communities;

Established evaluative reporting procedures; and

Administrative accountability and financial reporting based on the principles of transparency and disclosure.

IAAW projects, services and programs are developed by and for Alberta’s Aboriginal Women and are open to all First Nations, Métis and Inuit Women and their families. Projects are specifically dedicated to Aboriginal Women living on/off reserve, on/off settlement and within rural/urban settings.

Mandate of the Organization:

To recognize and promote the leadership of Aboriginal Women in Alberta, be actively involved and assist Aboriginal Women to establish local representative groups and develop relationships to promote human rights and dignity of Aboriginal Women and their families, and to address economic, social, cultural and political issues of concern at the provincial, federal and international levels and as they impact Aboriginal Women in the communities.