COVID-19: statement from the Director-General Read now

About us

The Commonwealth Foundation is an intergovernmental organisation established by Heads of Government in support of the belief that the Commonwealth is as much an association of peoples as it is of governments.

It is the Commonwealth agency for civil society; a unique, stand-alone organisation established by, funded by, and reporting to governments.

The Foundation is dedicated to strengthening people’s participation in all aspects of public dialogue, to act together and learn from each other to build democratic societies.

Ultimately, the Foundation seeks to ensure that policy and government institutions are more effective contributors to development through the influence of civic voices.


A world where every person is able to fully participate in and contribute to the sustainable development of a peaceful and equitable society.


To support civic voices to share their stories, learn and act together and influence the institutions that shape people’s lives.

Core values

Recognising that the plurality of people and natural environments of the Commonwealth lies at the heart of its strength, the Commonwealth Foundation will respect this diversity in fulfilling its mission. It is committed to the equality of opportunity for all, to respect for difference, and environmental sustainability.

Recognising that effective, responsive and accountable governance requires the inputs of all stakeholders, the Commonwealth Foundation will share the learning generated by the participation of civil society. It is committed to inspiring dialogue from the bottom up, promoting consultations, building consensus, facilitating convergence, forging partnerships and engaging diverse stakeholders in participatory governance.

Recognising that intergovernmental organisations are publicly funded and answerable to their member states, the Commonwealth Foundation will act in a thoroughly transparent manner in all its undertakings. It is committed to demonstrating accountability to both governments and civil society. It pursues its mission with commitment, discipline and rigour.

Recognising the scale and scope of the challenges facing Commonwealth people, their organisations and natural environments, the Commonwealth Foundation acknowledges the requirement to be innovative in its responses. It is committed to acting as a catalyst that brings stakeholders together to generate creative and innovative solutions and promote thoughtful analysis and learning.