As a feminist and a pacifist since my teens, I was outraged by our attack on Iraq in March 2003, and by the glaring absence of women, not only from policy-making forums in every country involved, but even from the streets of Iraq and Afghanistan. I could do nothing to stop the war, but I could contribute to the ongoing struggle to advance women's rights throughout the world.
I have therefore, at age 86, set up a $100,000 fund in my will to provide an annual grant, in perpetuity, to organizations working to improve the political, civil, and economic rights of women—particularly in Muslim countries. After careful research, I chose the Global Fund for Women as the most experienced and productive organization to administer this fund. I was especially impressed by the diversity of the groups they support, and by the optimal use they make of small grants, such as mine.
Although I am grateful to all the women over the centuries who have fought for women's rights and for peace, I wish to dedicate my fund to two of them: to Jeannette Rankin, the first woman ever elected to the United States Congress (in 1917), and the only member of Congress to vote against our entry into both World War I and World War II; and to Meena, founder of the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA), who was assassinated in 1987 by Afghan government agents and their fundamentalist accomplices because of her heroic struggle for women's rights and for human rights.
New York, New York
Anne Firth Murray Circle Donor since 2005