Prospects for change in 66 countries are brighter than ever, as women’s groups will share in the $1.48 million in Global Fund grants this quarter. While funds will be used to address a range of issues, there is particular emphasis on building peace and breaking the cycle of violence in their communities. This is in line with the Global Fund special initiative on Women and Militarism.
The $1.48 million that constitute the second docket of our annual grantmaking cycle will be disbursed among five regions:
- $359,000 to 32 groups in Sub-Saharan Africa
- $360,000 to 24 groups in the Americas
- $357,000 to 25 groups in Asia/Oceania
- $257,000 to 11 groups in Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States
- $326,500 to 17 groups in the Middle East/North Africa
“Against the backdrop of rampant abuse of power by governments and corporations, a devastating global financial crisis and rising religious and social conservatism, GFW is not only the sole source of funding for many radical and cutting-edge initiatives, but is seen as an ally by women's groups around the world in their struggles for equality, justice and rights,” noted Global Fund CEO and President Kavita Ramdas.
Asia/Oceania: Human Rights Advocacy & Legal Aid Institute in Yogyakarta, Indonesia launched a five-year project entitled “Political Education for Women Laborers and Capacity Building for Women Legislators.” The Institute will train and organize women workers and women legislators to increase their political participation at all levels to ensure that issues like equal pay and maternity leave, are addressed. By law, 30 percent of candidates in Indonesia must be female. Yogyakarta province missed the mark in the recent 2009 elections. But the Institute is not deterred, its goal is to have a slate of women workers as legislative candidates for the 2014 general elections. (GFW Grant in this docket: $20,000; Total Grants from GFW: $60,000)
“The work of the Human Rights Advocacy & Legal Aid Institute is very necessary to ensure that women’s rights, both as workers and as members of society, are protected and strengthened,” Shalini Nataraj, Vice President of Programs, after a visit of the group in July 2009.
Americas: A highlight of our Americas support is the Latin American Women’s Fund Consortium, a collaborative comprised of the Central American Women’s Fund, Semillas - Mexico, Angela Borba Fund in Brazil, Alquimia - Chile, Fondo de Mujeres del Sur in Argentina, and Fondo Mujer in Colombia. Their first initiative, “Beyond Invisibility: Latin American’s Women’s Funds Mobilizing for Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Communities” will use direct grants, capacity building and peer exchanges to strengthen the movement for sexuality rights in Latin America. (GFW Grant: $50,000; Total GFW Grants: $100,000)
ECIS: The Forum of Women’s NGOs of Kyrgyzstan is a network of more than 85 non-governmental organizations (NGO), working in three areas: violence, political participation, and the economy. With GFW support, the Forum in the midst of a five-year program for advancing women’s political participation. Its national campaign, “50 days - 50 women - 50% in politics” has already had an impact: three women are now members of the Kyrgyz Parliament and seven local women from Forum’s network became members of local councils in 2008. (GFW Grant: $40,000 ; Total: $116,500)
Cool link: Status of Women’s Rights in Kyrgyzstan
MENA: Advancing legal and political rights for women in Egypt (and the Arab region) is the mission of the Egyptian Center for Women’s Rights (ECWR). The group is also confronting gender-based discrimination head-on. Egyptian civil society organizations exist in a harsh and repressive climate; making ECWR’s groundbreaking work on women’s political participation and sexual harassment even more remarkable. ECWR was instrumental in the passage of laws criminalizing sexual harassment; and an important step in restoring credibility to the legal system. In addition, the group has used community education, radio/TV, research and documentation to strengthen the role of Egyptian NGOs. (GFW Grant:$20,000; Total:$102,000)
Sub-Saharan Africa: Working in a community whose HIV prevalence rate is nearly four times the national average, the Bondo Women’s Medical Clinic’s (BWMC) is a lifeline for the people of Bondo, Kenya. The group actively promotes women’s clinical reproductive health as a right and a way to reduce maternal mortality, unsafe abortions and sexually transmitted infections – each of which is also four times the national average. With support from the Global Fund, BWMC will strengthen its work with community mobile clinics, which are part of Kenya’s community-based sexual and reproductive health intervention program. The group also plans to open 30 Safe Spaces or Dialogue Centers and train 60 Community-based Reproductive Health Counselors (CBC) to improve access to care, reduce stigmatization and mortality rates. (GFW Grant:$9,000; Total:$29,000)
With 22 years of funding women’s groups and networks across the world, the Global Fund for Women has developed a deep network of international leaders and activists. These local-to-global connections allow us to reach and link women and organizations that others cannot. Global Fund grants support women’s efforts to improve their status and that of their communities.
The Global Fund for Women is a publicly supported grantmaking foundation that advances human rights by investing in women-led organizations worldwide. Our international network of women and men mobilizes financial resources to support women’s contributions to social justice, equality and peace.www.globalfundforwomen.org
Docket list, interviews and photos of grantees available upon request.
For more information, please contact: Deborah Holmes, Vice President of Communications
Ph: 415-248-4800 or email: dholmes[at] globalfundforwomen.org
Written by Iris Garcia (Program Team) and Preeti Mangala Shekar (Communications)