How We Grant

Indian women cheer

Our Theory of Change

Global Fund for Women believes that women are powerful catalysts for change and that strong women’s organizations and movements make transformative shifts in power that are crucial to women realizing their rights and creating lasting solutions to the world’s problems. We advocate for, and subscribe to, a philanthropy that invests in the human rights of women and girls, mobilizes resources, and that empowers women’s organizations and movements. We actively seek global partnerships that contribute to enabling all people to live in a just and equitable society.

This theory of change is premised on:


The multifaceted, political, and systemic nature of gender inequality


A rights based approach, rather than a development led approach, being crucial to realizing women’s and girls’ human rights


Women, and women’s organizations, in local communities and beyond as key participants and drivers of social change


Flexible funding to women’s rights organizations being critical to support, strengthen, and sustain a strong foundation and acumen for women’s rights movement building globally

Gender inequality will have been addressed when women can fully, freely and safely participate in political, economic and social life and in choices over their bodies, sexuality and reproductive health.

How do we know we’re making a difference?

We have developed a set of tools and processes that are integrated in our daily work that a) track our progress b) capture impact c) test assumptions d) adapt as necessary.

Our change matrix identifies four areas where change must occur in order for it to be transformative and lasting.

Change matrix showing four quadrants: Individual Change, Systemic Change, Informal Change, and Formal Change.

Ensuring Our Impact

Global Fund grantees have gone on to win the Nobel Peace Prize, be elected to parliament, overthrow oppressive regimes, and end wars. We are able to find, fund, and collaborate with women-led groups who employ creative and groundbreaking strategies to address challenges that women and girls face in their communities. We do this by conducting an extensive due diligence process that looks for the following criteria in the women’s organizations we fund:

Venn Diagram showing three overlapping circles which are our funding criteria. We fund organizations that are Women-Led, Connected, and have a Rights-Based Approach.