Well, hello my feminist giving friends! I hope you all enjoyed your Thanksgiving holiday and it gave you a chance to reflect on some of the things you are thankful for. That was my focus this Thanksgiving, as my family and I went for a hike at Stoppleworth Conservation Area in Tolland, Connecticut.
This conservation area was created by my mother in 2004, by selling a 55 acre parcel of land that my father bought in the 1970’s and used to harvest wood for the wood-burning stoves of our house. It was a bold decision for my mother to move this land into open space, and I was proud to be the daughter helping facilitate the deal. Every year around Thanksgiving, we try to visit the land and appreciate its supreme beauty and the amazing strength of my mother to part with this precious land and put it into the public trust.
The feminist giving news is coming at us fast and furious here at Philanthropy Women, and I am truly like Lucille Ball working in the candy store on the conveyor belt, with my mouth and shirt packed with candies and nowhere to go with them all. In my highly packed schedule of clinical sessions and book editing sessions, there is not much time left to write up all of this feminist giving news.
But I will enumerate some of the big happenings nonetheless, as I work away at changes to the proof hardcover copy of Feminist Giving. I am surprised at how many people seem to want to buy a paper copy, preferring it over the ebook. The ebook is a much more facile resource for connecting to the web of feminist giving activity, research, and thought leadership, as it contains the links to the 240 citations in the book. In the print book, those citations are all enumerated and listed in the end notes.
Well hello my philanthro-friends! How have you been? I’ve missed you, but have been busy with edits for the print version of Feminist Giving, as well as the ongoing work that goes with being a full-time therapist, and, over the past year, the nursery childcare provider for St. Stephen’s in Providence (smoky Steve’s!). Never a dull moment around here!
Feminist Giving is now available on Amazon, and this past week we finally finished the print version, and I have ordered the proof copy of the hardcover edition. The book has over 240 citations, so it took a lot of formatting work to put together the full print bibliography. My special thanks go out to Maggie May who has been sticking with it to make this project a reality. Thank you so much, Maggie. I literally couldn’t do it without you, and I appreciate your work every day.
It’s nice to be number one, even if only for a short time, and better for a long time. Currently, Feminist Giving is trending on Kobo as the number one title under a number of headings and sub-headings.
Working with my team on Feminist Giving has occupied a great deal of my time, much moreso than I would have estimated. Being your own editor and publisher requires a number of technical skills on top of everything else. And then when people are having trouble with their subscription, I am also my own technical support. So since Bill Gates and many of the other technology pioneers of our time have had their way, technology takes up more of my time than I would like. However, I approach new technology issues as a challenge, a puzzle to be solved, and more often than not, I can solve the puzzle. Not bad for being 53. We’ll see if I can still keep up on all these technologies at 65.
Editor’s Note: The following article is by Emily Brown, feminist activist and Oxfam’s former Lead for Transformative Leadership for Women’s Rights.
Long before the COVID-19 pandemic emerged as a terrifying reality worldwide, Southern feminist activists have organized together to provide both immediate local services and long-term support to those affected by poverty, violence and oppression. They have effectively organised environmental, anti-racist, labour, peace and political movements across communities to promote and protect women’s rights and social justice.
As Afghan women join in the streets of Kabul to mark one year since the Taliban’s return to power and call for ‘bread, work and freedom’ – here’s MADRE on the sophisticated organising of local women’s rights networks last year – barely mentioned in mainstream media coverage of recent events:
Big news! My book, Feminist Giving: Creating New Frontiers in Social Change, is finally coming out!
I had been circulating a book proposal for a while and was not getting any good bites, so have finally decided to go with a “hybrid publisher” — where you can get maximum circulation prospects and also maintain copyright ownership of your work. In large part, I will be assembling my own team for marketing and distribution.
Publishing a Book is Hard, and Doesn’t Leave Much Time for Other Work
As you can imagine, it has been challenging to balance working on the book, my 75+ open caseload as a therapist, and finding time for Philanthropy Women. Lots is still happening in feminist philanthropy and I will be writing a round-up of the latest big doings next week.
Editor’s Note: This interview in our Feminist Giving IRL series features Jessica Ryckman, Director of Fellowships at Equal Justice Works.
Q: What do you wish you had known when you started out in your profession?
A: Right now our nation is facing an unprecedented wave of setbacks that threaten basic human rights previously protected by law. Millions of Americans cannot afford legal assistance when facing life-changing situations, and a 2020 study found that there is only one legal aid attorney for every 10,000 people living at or below the poverty line. This is leaving a gap in our justice system at a time when access to legal aid is more needed than ever.
When I began my career, I was aware of so many attorneys who dreamed of working in public service but were hindered by finances, equity, and accessibility. The cost of a legal education precluded many from entering public interest law upon graduation – or even discouraged attending law school at all. There were also fewer resources at law schools for first generation graduates, like me, who were interested in public interest law but lacked familiarity and mentors to help navigate the legal landscape and make educated choices about how to achieve a career in public service.
Editor’s Note: The following Opinion piece is by Chiara de Luca and Bethan Cansfield, two women’s rights researchers based in London, UK.
As authoritarianism and inequality spread worldwide, and surveillance technology advances, feminist movements face increasing hurdles in their quest for social justice. Cyberattacks, repression of dissent and harassment against women and LGBTI human rights defenders worsened during the past two years in almost all regions of the world.
Women’s funds have been at the forefront of standing in solidarity with feminist activists during the pandemic. The importance of funding feminist movements’ efforts to defend land rights, promote reproductive and sexual health, enhance political participation, and prevent violence against women is now widely recognized. In Argentina, Benin and Mexico, feminist activism brought changes in abortion laws. In North Macedonia, Moldova, Tunisia, and Turkey, feminist groups successfully campaigned for laws to end violence against women and girls. A recent ODI briefing found feminist movements contribute significantly to gender norm changes.
Along with all of the other forms of oppression that a world without access to abortion brings, a particularly stark example of the violence that women face in the patriarchy occurred here in Rhode Island recently. Jennifer Rourke, who is part of the Rhode Island Cooperative, an alliance of progressive democratic candidates running for state office, was punched repeatedly by her opponent in the Senate race, Jeann Lugo.
Jennifer Rourke was speaking at a rally to protest the end of Roe V. Wade in Providence. After speaking, she was standing in the audience with friends. According to Matt Brown, candidate for Governor in Rhode Island and co-founder of the Rhode Island Co-op, three right-wing counter-protesters showed up. Jennifer, as one of the leaders there, approached the situation to try to de-escalate and defuse any possible conflict or disruption to the event. But moments later, Lugo, who is a Providence police officer and was off-duty, punched her in the face. The incident was caught on video by Bill Bartholomew.
This batch of feminist funding news spans from state-based government funding for childcare workers (brilliant stuff!) to ten new additions we have made to the funders listed in our Gender Equality Funder Database. Enjoy!
1: Women’s Foundation of Colorado Makes Goal of 100% Gender Lens Investable Assets
“As the only community foundation in the state focused on gender, racial, and economic equity, it was time to unapologetically integrate all assets of our operation and programs around our goals to ensure the success of our strategic framework,” said Lauren Y. Casteel, president and CEO of The Women’s Foundation. “We are proud to align our money with our mission, and to use all of our available resources to maximize donor impact.”