Plan International USA Announces Transfer of WomenLead Institute

November 29, 2018

WASHINGTON – Today, Plan International USA announced the transfer of WomenLead Institute (WLI) to Counterpart International, an organization that helps people build better lives and more durable futures.

WLI was born from the Centre for Development and Population Activities (CEDPA), which was acquired by Plan International USA in 2012. WLI has since inspired many of Plan International USA’s successful programs, including BLOOM and Because I Am A Girl. With more than 40 years of experience, WLI has transformed the lives of thousands of women leaders in more than 90 countries around the world. The program will continue to focus on building women’s leadership and management skills, confidence, and networks in sectors such as health, economic empowerment, and peace and security. 

The transfer is part of Plan International USA’s strategic planning process. The organization’s new FY20-22 strategy, approved by its board this month, puts children and girls at the center Plan’s program and advocacy efforts. During the strategic planning process, it became clear to the management that in order to dedicate the resources needed to enable the strategy to succeed and for WLI to grow, Plan needed to find a home in a new organization with a strategic focus on women’s leadership. The leadership team at Plan International USA conducted a thoughtful and competitive process to determine the best new home for WLI.

“I’ve been privileged to witness and take part in the difference WLI has made in women’s lives across the globe,” said Tessie San Martin, president & CEO of Plan International USA. “One of the hardest things for any organization to do is to stop doing something that they have been doing for a long time and put their limited resources to work on something else. This transfer is a win-win. It will allow WLI to grow and thrive and will allow Plan to focus its investments.” San Martin added: “I look forward to seeing the many strides the program will continue to make at its new home.”

The transfer will include all current WLI staff and assets. The team’s final day at Plan International USA will be January 1 and they will begin their work with Counterpart on January 2, 2019.

Visit Plan International USA’s website for more information about the organization's leadership team.

About Plan International USA

Plan International USA is an independent development and humanitarian organization that advances children’s rights and equality for girls. Plan believes in the power and potential of every child. Working together with children, young people, supporters, and partners, Plan strives for a just world, tackling the root causes of the challenges facing girls and all vulnerable children. For more information, please visit