Ethiopian World Federation

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Ethiopian World Federation (EWF)
EWF logo
Full name Ethiopian World Federation
Founded August 25, 1937
Members ---
Affiliation International
Key people
Office location Harlem, New York
Country International

The Ethiopian World Federation (EWF) was established in 1937 to provide an institutional framework for pro-Ethiopian activities. Its mission was to embody the aspiration of "the black people of the world" [1] and emphasizing their identification with the Ethiopian cause. Founded during the Second Italo-Ethiopian war, the pan-African organization initially focused its activities on building the moral character and financial support of black people toward efforts in the Ethiopian war. The EWF was made up primarily of Ethiopian students who came to America to study abroad, after the official coronation of Emperor Haile Selassie. Out of those Ethiopian students was Melaku Beyen who successfully led the mission of federating the pro-Ethiopian organization. Organization efforts were successful in America, and also expanded when locals of the EWF were opened in Kingston, Jamaica.


The Ethiopian World Federation, Incorporated,[2] was originally a not-for-profit membership organization, incorporated in the State of New York, United States of America.[3] Later it was also registered by the Internal Revenue Services as a 501 (C) 4 (civic- league, social welfare) thus making the organization and her legal subsidiary locals, tax exempt.

This organization originally came into being on August 25, 1937 in New York City, through the efforts of African Americans who, in 1936, sent a delegation consisting of three prominent Harlem figures, all leaders of the black organization known as the United Aid for Ethiopia. Reverend William Lloyd Imes, Pastor of the prestigious St. James Presbyterian Church, Philip M. Savory of the Victory Insurance Company and co-owner of the New York Amsterdam News, and Cyril M Philp, secretary of the United Aid, sailed to England in the summer of 1936 to speak with Emperor Haile Selassie I concerning financial matters.[4]

In response, the Emperor empowered his personal physician Malaku E. Bayen as his special emissary in order to officially establish the Ethiopian World Federation, Incorporated in 1936/37. The main purpose was succinctly set out in the following preamble:

We the Black People of the World, in order to effect Unity, Solidarity, Liberty, Freedom and self-determination, to secure Justice and maintain the Integrity of Ethiopia, which is our divine heritage, do hereby establish and ordain this constitution for The Ethiopian World Federation, Incorporated.

This Constitution and By-Laws address constitutional aims and objects, membership, international officers and their duties, conventions, elections, meetings, local units, their establishment and organization, committees, impeachment of officers, units, benefits, amendments, order of business, etc.[5]

As a direct result of the support Ethiopia received from black people in the West, namely at that time African-Americans, during the Italian invasion 1935-1941, the Emperor granted five (5) Gashas of land near Shashamane to the E.W.F. Inc., for Ethiopian people in the Diaspora who desired to return to the motherland first in 1948. Later in 1967, Dr. Gladstone Robinson was officially and legally appointed by the corporate Executive Council as "sole true and lawful attorney", (i.e., Power-of-Attorney) for The Ethiopian World Federation, Incorporated with the title of "Administrator" for the Shashamane Land Grant generally.[6]

The major goal of The Ethiopian World Federation, Incorporated is inherent in the very name of the organization.[7] The Ethiopian (Black people), World (globally), Federation (semi-autonomous groups working together), Incorporated (original legal & historic parent entity) determined " seek peace and pursue it (Psalm 34 Verse 14), for it is the will of God for man." According to the EWF Constitution & By-Law, Article 1, Sec. 1A.[8]