It’s always great to see your name up in lights, particularly at such a highly esteemed publication as Women’s eNews. Alyssa Fisher, the 2020 fellow in the Sy Syms Journalistic Excellence Program at Women’s eNews called me up and let me have a great riffing session on what it’s like to be at the helm of our small but mighty publication, Philanthropy Women, and what I see feminist donors doing for the world that no one else is doing.
From the article:
The idea to launch a website dedicated to women in philanthropy first came to Kiersten Marek in 2016, when Hillary Clinton was anticipated to win the presidential election and become the United State’s first woman president. When she launched it the following year, it felt even more pertinent.
On Wednesday, October 7th, the team at A Call To Men convened a conversation on giving strategy is the COVID economy, featuring with Michael Stars’ Suzanne Lerner and the New York Women’s Foundation’s Ana Oliveira.
Ted Bunch, Chief Development Officer at A Call To Men, opened the call with a group check-in. He encouraged participants to share the ways they are thriving and struggling during the pandemic. This interactive portion of the call featured stories from men and women around the country, including foundation representatives and individuals struggling with work prospects, productivity, and social justice in the midst of the pandemic.
Ultimately, the people on the call celebrated a feeling of community that is created in every virtual session for A Call To Men: the team misses the engagement possibilities of in-person events, and has celebrated all the ways they can continue to drive participation during virtual events.
With an organization model built on women who pledge or donate at least $1 million of their wealth, it’s no surprise that Women Moving Millions is associated with large-scale campaigns and fundraising projects. The latest campaign from WMM, “Give Bold. Get Equal.” encourages donors and foundations to commit funds to gender equality in ways unheard of before the COVID-19 pandemic.
The end goal? Mobilize $100 million for women and girls by the year 2022.
“Women and girls need our support more than ever in this moment,” says Sarah Haacke Byrd, Executive Director of WMM. “The past decade is bookended by the Great Recession and the COVID-19 crisis. During this time, women gained 11 million jobs, and by April 2020, all these jobs were erased. The pandemic is exacerbating the systemic oppression faced by women and girls.”
As many of us know too well, we are living in a time when disinformation can kill you. Disinformation can also derail strong campaigns for leadership during an election season. In the case of our current political climate, there is great need for funders to step into the breach and defend news and information so that voters can make informed decisions.
To that end, I was thrilled to hear about a new project called the Women’s Disinformation Defense Project, which will work extra hard to defend our women and people of color candidates from being shredded mercilessly by fake news in the next 5 weeks. Convened by UltraViolet, the project is being dubbed a new “war room” that is creating and disseminating journalism that will counter the disinformation being targeted to voters.
Editor’s Note: The following dialogue is between Dr. Diandra J. Prescod, associate professor and program coordinator of counselor education at the University of Connecticut, and Erin Milroy, president of Kuder, Inc., an award-winning career guidance solutions provider. Their exchange offers perspectives on how to prepare and support American workers, particularly women, as we deal with COVID and its economic and social impacts.
With millions displaced due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, America’s workforce, and American families from all walks of life, have been hit hard.
Many women and men have been laid off or furloughed by their employers and have been forced to seek employment elsewhere, re-entering what is one of the most difficult climates since the Great Depression. Other households continue to struggle to find daily work-life balance, a dilemma made worse for those who, amidst social distancing measures to avoid infection, have been faced with unprecedented challenges, such as homeschooling their children during their workdays.
Alliance for Girls (AFG), a California-based network of girls-serving organizations, wants state and local leaders to pay more attention to the needs of girls—particularly Black girls and girls of color—in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.
To investigate this issue further, Alliance for Girls has launched “When Girls Thrive,” an initiative researching and advocating for an expanded understanding of how girls are being impacted by COVID. It includes an online survey, and addresses the lack of data on the needs and experiences of girls and gender-expansive youth up to 24 years of age. This group is particularly vulnerable during this time of increased health risks, extended isolation, and significant disruption and barriers to education and work. Such challenges are even more extreme for Black youth and youth of color.
Three weeks ago, I was elected as Board Chair of the Equal Rights Amendment Fund for Women’s Equality. As a funder and champion of women’s rights and economic justice, this call to step up could not have come at a more urgent time.
Each one of us has had many moments of reckoning during COVID-19. But as women of color, we have seen that COVID has treated us differently from the rest. Race has been identified as a co-morbidity and a risk factor, just like diabetes or heart disease. Our healthcare systems, our educational systems, and our systems for protecting essential workers are all struggling mightily against a dangerous and mysterious disease. Basic rights and systems have been demolished for women, and women of color are being particularly hard-hit, facing higher rates of job loss while also being expected to bear more responsibility for caregiving and educating children.
Editor’s Note: The following announcement is from the publication Foreign Policy.
The COVID-19 crisis has been a stark reminder that global health is a fundamental security concern. The pandemic has exposed deep inequalities in health and social systems at global and national levels, including gender inequities, weakening our collective ability to tackle COVID-19 and generate improved health outcomes into the future. It is clear that the commitment made by governments to deliver Universal Health Coverage by 2030 is an essential prerequisite for global health security. Many lives will be lost to COVID-19 because gender disparities in the health workforce and wider society weaken our response. We can take steps now to build back better and bring the important conversation about equality and health into the international security arena.
On Thursday, August 27th, we gathered for this month’s Philanthropy Women webinar: Women in Media Changing the Game. With guests Lori Sokol, Ruth Ann Harnisch, and Johanna Derlega, we discussed the under-funding and under-representation of female journalists and women’s media outlets, as well as ways funders can work to fix this under-representation.
How To Increase Funding for Women in Media
Editor-in-Chief Kiersten Marek kicked off the call with a reminder to breathe, and introduced today’s theme: Women in Media Changing the Game.
“We know now more than ever how important women’s leadership is,” she said. “COVID has taught us that women leaders in countries around the world have had much better success with managing COVID. And that’s just one example of the women’s leadership differential—the ability to prioritize health and the well-being of others.”
The Women’s Philanthropy Institute (WPI) at the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy is partnering with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation on a new nearly two million dollar grant whose goal is to “advance actionable, global research on women’s giving to inform and equip donors and nonprofits.”
The funding will fuel WPI’s ongoing research on domestic and global women’s giving, and empower organizations, donors and fundraisers to put these research insights into practice. Since 2015, WPI has conducted research on gender and philanthropy that helps inform the foundation’s Giving By All initiative, which is focused on growing giving and helping donors give more effectively and strategically.