100&Change: Plan and 99 Other Organizations Vie for $100 Million

On February 20, Plan International USA announced the next step in its campaign toward a $100 million grant: selection as one of the top 100 organizations considered for the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation‘s 100&Change competition.

Plan International USA announced its selection as one of the “Top 100” in the MacArthur Foundation’s 100&Change competition. (Photo Credit: Plan International USA Video on Ensuring All People Count)

Plan celebrates with 99 other organizations, selected from a pool of almost 4,000 worthy applicants and 800 proposals, all setting out to solve one of the world’s most critical social challenges.

Plan’s challenge? Create a high-quality civil registration and vital statistics (CRVS) system–called OpenCRVS–capable of closing the gap between the world’s unregistered population and the governments, systems, and organizations that seek to serve them.

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Prioritizing Gender Equality: A Response to the Gates Annual Letter

When one of the richest women in the world decides that gender equality should be more of a priority, what impact does that have? Should we cheer, or fear, this development?

For two decades, Bill and Melinda have spent $53.8 billion on philanthropy, all for the purpose of making the world a better place. Now, for the first time in that twenty years, Melinda Gates has planted a stake in the ground and declared gender to be a topic of high priority for the foundation’s work, and for her own work happening separately through Pivotal Ventures. From the letter:

Melinda Gates devotes much of her part of the Gates Annual letter to discussing her agenda for bringing gender equality to the fore as a social issue. (Image Credit: Gates Foundation website)

In addition to the foundation’s 20th anniversary, this year marks another milestone I’ve been thinking about a lot lately: the 25th anniversary of the Beijing World Conference on Women. (If that name doesn’t ring a bell, you may know it as the event where Hillary Clinton famously declared that “Human rights are women’s rights, and women’s rights are human rights.”)

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Debbie I. Chang Takes the Reins as CEO of Blue Shield of California Fdn

Chang brings dynamic leadership experience in federal, state, and community health

SAN FRANCISCO (Feb. 12, 2020) ­ Blue Shield of California Foundation announced today the appointment of Debbie I. Chang as president and chief executive officer, overseeing its programs of more than $30 million in annual grantmaking to meet the diverse health needs of all Californians and to address the root causes of poor health and violence. 

Blue Shield of California Foundation Names Debbie I. Chang as President and CEO. (photo credit: Blue Shield of California Foundation)

Chang, currently senior vice president and chief policy and prevention officer at Nemours Children’s Health System, which is headquartered in Jacksonville, Florida, with operations in five states and Washington, DC, has an extensive history of developing innovative national programs, leading ambitious health partnerships, and advocating policies to promote the health of children and families.

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NoVo Foundation Announces $10 Million in Life Story Grants

(Jan 28, 2020) The NoVo Foundation is honored to announce the recipients of The Life Story Grants: a $10 million, three-year investment in fifteen projects that open exit ramps and close on-ramps to commercial sexual exploitation across the U.S. 

The Life Story Grants follows the launch of The Life Story: Moments of Change, a survivor-centered examination of 13 moments that can shape — or change — the trajectory of how girls and women enter the sex trade — also referred to as “the Life”.

NoVo remains committed to deepening our understanding of systemic barriers faced by survivors and lifting up the work that will be a catalyst for change. The Life Story Grants aims to support and expand the efforts of underserved leaders across the country and foster collaboration among national and community organizations that seek to address the short-term needs while supporting long-term solutions. Funding for these projects will address how systems such as foster care, healthcare, immigration, housing and law enforcement can shift and respond to survivors and their communities. 

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Take Our Survey to Make Us Stronger and More Effective

UPDATE: Thank you to all who have responded to our survey. We are getting a lot of good ideas for how to expand and sharpen our strategy. Those who haven’t joined in, get busy! Think of it as free therapy — your chance to vent about all your hopes and fears for gender equality movements.

Below is a survey we are are asking readers to respond to. With so many advanced thinkers and leaders in our audience, Philanthropy Women wants to make sure we have your needs covered when it comes to gender equality funding news. We also want to be able to share insights and honest observations from the community about gender equality movements and strategies, particularly ideas that might not otherwise surface in public discourse. Please let us know your thoughts!

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Gates Fdn and India Ministry Sign MOC on Women, Maternal Health

New Delhi [India], Jan 8 (Asian News International): In a bid to improve the healthcare system of the country, the Union Cabinet on Wednesday gave its ex-post-facto approval on the Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) between Union Health Ministry and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF).

Women and children receiving medical care in India (Credit: UN WOMEN on Flickr)

The Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) covers the following areas: to reduce maternal, neonatal and child morbidity and mortality, improve key nutrition outcomes by improving the reach, coverage and quality of essential primary health, immunization and nutrition services.

The memorandum will also focus on the quality of family planning methods and reaching out to younger women.

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Ascend Fund Launches with Millions for Women in U.S. Politics

Panorama Global Launches The Ascend Fund to Achieve Equal Representation for Women in U.S. Politics 

SEATTLE – Today, Panorama Global announced the formal launch of The Ascend Fund, a collaborative fund dedicated to accelerating the pace of change towards gender parity in U.S. politics. The Ascend Fund, pools philanthropic capital to support nonpartisan, nonprofit organizations that are working to ensure women have access to the resources and support they need to run for office, and that are breaking down the barriers that prevent women from running and winning. 

The Ascend Fund received seed funding from Pivotal Ventures, an investment and incubation company founded by Melinda Gates, which seeks to advance social progress in the U.S. for women and families. As part of the strategy to accelerate women’s power and influence, Pivotal Ventures provides catalytic support for partners to create resilient and inclusive pathways for women pursuing public office.

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WFN to Lead Gates-Funded Anti-Poverty Work Via Women’s Funds

A giant breakthrough has happened for women’s funds and feminist approaches to social change. The Women’s Funding Network, the world’s largest network of foundations investing in women and girls, has announced receiving $1.69 million in grant funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. This funding will be used to establish “a cohort of ten women’s foundations whose collaborative efforts will be harnessed to increase women’s economic mobility in their communities,” according to a press release announcing the new funding.

Cynthia Nimmo, CEO of the Women’s Funding Network, thanked the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation for their generous gift of $1.69 million, which will fund multi-state efforts led by women’s funds to create economic mobility for women and girls. (Photo Credit: WFN)

This funding could not have come at a more auspicious time. Women’s funds and gender lens grantmaking are a tiny but fast-expanding segment of philanthropy, and this historically large grant will put the peddle to the metal for accelerating feminist approaches to social change.

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Michele Moore Joins Ford Foundation Executive Team

NEW YORK — The Ford Foundation has announced the appointment of Michele Moore as vice president of Global Communications. Moore will join the foundation’s executive leadership team in New York, overseeing all aspects of strategic communications across the foundation’s 11 offices in the United States and abroad. She begins her new role in January 2020, succeeding Alfred D. Ironside who helped lead the foundation’s communications efforts over a 14-year tenure.

Michelle Moore will become Vice President of Global Communications at the Ford Foundation. (Image Credit: PR Week)

Moore comes to the foundation from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), where she served as chief communications officer through a time of rapid expansion at the organization. The ACLU’s press coverage, social media following, and membership grew dramatically under Moore’s communications stewardship, which led to her recognition on PR Week magazine’s 2017 and 2018 Power Lists as one of the top communications professionals in the US. With more than 25 years’ experience, spanning the nonprofit, government, Fortune 500, and academic sectors, Moore brings vast expertise in delivering effective communications strategies in high-stakes media environments.

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Find Out How Giving Circles Are Gaining Ground

More is going on in the giving circle arena than ever before, it appears. As those of you know who have been following along at Philanthropy Women, giving circles have increased dramatically over the past ten years and now are poised for an even bigger impact.

Giving Circles have captured the attention of communities across the United States with their ability to accelerate social change with collective giving. With $2 million in anchor support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, giving circles are poised for further growth in 2020.

The giving circle co-design team, which consists of leaders from Amplifier, Asian Women’s Giving Circle, Catalist, Community Investment Network, and Latino Community Foundation, recently announced that they have secured a $2 million investment from anchor funding partner, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. With this support, they are working to fully launch “a suite of tools, programming, and support for networks, individual circles, host organizations, and other stakeholders,” according to an email to the community.

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