Rufa and the girls in her group share a laugh

Our Grantmaking

Global Fund for Women envisions a world where movements for gender justice have transformed power and privilege for a few into equity and equality for all. We fund bold, ambitious, and expansive gender justice movements to create meaningful change that will last beyond our lifetimes.

Our primary goal is to get resources to gender justice movements around the globe. Our movement-led approach allows for movements to determine their own needs and allocate funding accordingly through Movement Committees, a type of participatory grantmaking. As funders, our goal is to provide resources that strengthen the agency, participation, and power of movements working directly in their communities.

We provide flexible, core-support grants for operating and program expenses, give multi-year grants as often as possible, and offer travel and event organizing grants to support knowledge-exchanges and convenings. Global Fund for Women also provides immediate support to organizations who are first responders in times of natural and human-made crises.

Global Fund for Women is currently transitioning to a model where we primarily support movements for gender justice. This includes feminist, grassroots, and women-led initiatives and organizations. Please carefully review our application process, criteria, and priorities below.

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Please click on the titles below to learn about our process and access our online application site.

Global Fund for Women provides three types of grants: general support grants, travel and event organizing grants, and crisis grants. Please read the Criteria section below carefully to make sure your organization is eligible before proceeding.

Please note that our application process is now online and we do not accept proposals sent by email. Our application forms are available on our site in five languages: Arabic, English, French, Russian, and Spanish.

Our two-step process

Our application process has two steps:

Step 1: Register your organization by submitting an Organizational Profile.

Step 2:

  • Submit a proposal for a General Support or Crisis Grant when your organization is invited
  • Submit a proposal for a Travel or Event Organizing Grant if your organization meets the criteria below for Travel and Event Organizing grants

Both steps must be completed through our online system. Please see the grant descriptions below for instructions.

Step 1. Submit an Organizational Profile to register your group’s interest in funding

To be eligible for funding, all organizations must begin by submitting an organizational profile via our online application site.

Organizational Profiles allow us to learn about an organization’s strategies, priorities, and programs in order to determine whether they align with current funding opportunities.

Please carefully review our criteria and priorities below before completing a profile. Our profile forms are open year-round in our online system. Groups can submit a profile at any time. Completed profiles are valid for two years, at which time the group can update the information in their profiles.

Please note that although submitting a profile is the first step in applying for funding, it does not guarantee an invitation to submit a grant proposal. Due to funding limitations, not all groups will be invited to submit a grant proposal.

PDF guide on how to create an online account and Organizational Profile can be found here.

Step 2. Submit a grant proposal

In order to submit a proposal, groups MUST have an active Organizational Profile. Proposal forms and requirements vary depending on the grant type and funding opportunity. Please review the instructions and requirements below as well as any instructions provided in the proposal forms.

Please note all proposals are submitted online, using the same account username and password created to submit the Organizational Profile.

General Support Grants

The majority of our funding opportunities are for general support grants. General support grants can be used to fund an organization’s projects and programs as well as operating and program expenses, such as rent, salaries, communications, and travel costs.

Global Fund for Women periodically invites organizations whose work aligns with our current funding opportunities to submit proposals for general support funding. We select these organizations from the Organizational Profiles in our system and through recommendations from our advisors. Please see the Priorities section below for more information about our current priorities.

Please note that due to limited funding and staff capacity, only organizations that have been invited to apply may submit a proposal for general support funding. If you wish to be considered for general support funding in the future, please register your organization by submitting an Organizational Profile via our online application site (see Step 1).

Travel Grants and Event Organizing Grants

Due to COVID-19 we are temporarily suspending our Travel and Events grant program. We do plan to reinstate it as it becomes safe to travel again. Please check back for an update in January.

You can read more on our COVID-19 response here.

Crisis Grants

Global Fund for Women invites women’s rights groups to apply for crisis grants to respond to the following crisis situations:

  • Climate and natural disasters
  • Public health crises
  • Sudden and drastic increases in political violence

In the past, Global Fund for Women has given grants to organizations providing crisis response to infectious disease outbreaks, large-scale floods, and sudden, massive displacement of people due to political violence.

Please note that groups must be invited by Global Fund for Women to submit a crisis grant application. Due to limited funding and staff capacity, only groups that have previously received a grant from Global Fund for Women will be invited to submit a crisis grant proposal. 

Our grant proposal review process

We acknowledge receipt of all online proposal submissions within 24 hours by email. Please allow at least three months for a decision on a general support grant proposal and at least three weeks on a travel or event proposal. Please note that to award a grant, we require positive endorsements from our advisors.

Please note that your group MUST meet all the following criteria to be eligible for a grant:

  • Be based in a country outside the United States. We do not fund US-based organizations.
  • Have a primary focus on advancing women’s equality and human rights, with these goals clearly reflected in its activities. Please note that groups whose sole purpose is to generate income or to provide charity to individuals are not eligible.
  • Be a group of women, girls, or trans people working together. We do not accept requests from individuals and do not fund projects proposed by or for the benefit of individuals (including scholarships).
  • Be governed, directed, and led by women, girls, or trans people, that is they must fill all or most of the leadership roles throughout the various decision-making levels of the group (including but not limited to the most senior decision-making levels).
  • Groups do not need to be registered non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to qualify for funding.

In addition, please note that Global Fund for Women does NOT fund the following:

  •  Government entities
  • International organizations proposing projects with local partners
  • Political parties or election campaigns
  • Women’s branches/departments/projects of mixed gender organizations


Women-focused projects within mixed-gender organizations may occasionally receive support from Global Fund for Women if they work with particularly marginalized groups: for example, women within groups of people with disabilities or women within LGBTQI organizations.

Please see the Priorities below for more information about who we fund.

We focus on issues that are of vital importance to women, girls, and trans people. In particular, we support organizations working as part of movements to prevent and address violence, advance economic and climate justice, and further sexual and reproductive health and rights.

Through an extensive process of interviews and conversations with grantees, advisors, and partners, we have refined our programmatic strategies to focus on areas where there is the greatest need and where our grantee partners can make the biggest difference. This process has been guided by our extensive network of in-country advisors who are grounded in the local context and come from the movements we support.

The issues outlined below represent our priorities for grantmaking until June 2020, based on our assessment and current funding opportunities. However, new opportunities often emerge, so you are still invited to submit a profile even if your organization works outside the current priorities and countries.

Through June 2020, we will focus on the following key priorities in our three issue areas:

Reproductive Justice and Sexual Rights

Resisting Rollbacks to the Global Gag Rule

  • Support groups to resist roll-backs in rights and impacts of the Global Gag rule

Decriminalization of Abortion

  • Support campaigns for safe abortion and the decriminalization of abortion

Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights of Marginalized Groups

  • Support the rights of historically marginalized groups, including lesbian, bisexual, trans, intersex and queer organizations

Global Fund for Women is also a partner in the AmplifyChange consortium, along with MannionDaniels and African Women’s Development Fund, to advance sexual and reproductive health and rights. Please visit the AmplifyChange website to view eligibility criteria and grant opportunities.

Freedom from Violence

Conflict and Crisis

  • Support women, girls, and trans people at risk of violence during and after conflict, including those who were forcefully displaced.
  • Support efforts to advance leadership and agency, self-organization and accountability.

Safety & Integrated Security

  • Support initiatives to advance the safety and integrated security of women human rights activists and defenders, including defenders of land, territory, and the environment.

Cultural & Religious Fundamentalism

  • Support women’s rights movements to challenge the influence of fundamentalisms—especially in justifying and condoning gender-based violence—by promoting a feminist understanding of religion; transforming social norms; and promoting inclusive societies.

Economic Justice

Women and Work

  • Support worker’s rights including domestic, factory, and farm workers
  • Support women’s engagement and leadership in agriculture with a particular focus on sustainable livelihoods and climate-resilient agricultural practices

Leadership Development

  • Support emerging leaders of new organizations and movements
  • Strengthen models of young women and inter-generational leadership
  • Strengthen women’s leadership at the organization and movement levels

Media & Technology

  • Support innovative approaches to media and technology that are related to our funding priorities in the issue areas outlined above

Women’s Funds

  • Continue to partner with national, regional, and global women’s funds. These funds make local grants to women’s rights groups. Their work to expand the money and resources available for women’s rights and builds a rich ecosystem of local partners and collaborators.

How we measure progress

This short informational video explains how Global Fund for Women uses the change matrix created by Gender at Work to better capture and learn from the outcomes achieved by our grantee partners.

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