COVID-19 puts pressure on all of us, but many women and girls are at higher risk of danger and oppression during these unprecedented times. A crisis like COVID-19 makes the widespread effects of issues like abuse, domestic violence, and rising barriers to educational, financial, and social survival much more intense–and often, much more deadly. The new Global Resilience Fund for Girls and Young Women seeks to answer this understated emergency with rapid, flexible funding to activist groups led by girls and young women.
The Global Resilience Fund supports informal collectives, registered organizations, and unregistered community groups led by girls, young women, and trans and intersex young people around the world. To reach populations that may otherwise have a difficult time obtaining funding, the Global Resilience Fund only offers grants to organizations with a budget of less than $50,000 per year. Successful applicants can receive “fully flexible rapid response grants” worth up to $5,000.
The Ms. Foundation for Women, through its recently formed Activist Collaboration Fund, is granting $275,000 to 15 organizations across the country that are led by and for women and girls of color, trans women and girls of color, and indigenous women and girls.
The Activist Collaboration Fund (ACF) launched in late January and focuses on social justice and movement-building, including fostering cooperation among organizations. The ACF received over 160 nominations from organizations by and for women and girls of color from 35 states, as well as the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and Guam.
At first, Megha Desai thought there was no way girls and women would take to social media to tell stories about their first periods. But as education, dignity, and confidence grew in a small town in India, the local women and girls surprised her.
Four years ago, the Desai Foundation held an awareness campaign about menstrual health and hygiene in the small town of Untdi, Gujarat–the village Desai’s father grew up in.
“We had all these signs laid out on tables, saying things like ‘Happy to Bleed,’ ‘Proud to be a Woman,’ and ‘Proud of my Womanhood,” remembers Desai, President of the Desai Foundation. “I looked at those signs and I thought, ‘Nobody is going to hold these signs up. We’re in a tiny little village where no woman would talk about her period. But by the end of the campaign, the women and girls were so confident and proud that they posed for pictures with these signs. It blew me away. I thought to myself, if these girls in this little village can hold these signs and pledge their periods, then we ought to be able to do that, too.”
MILAN (May 20, 2020) — The coronavirus pandemic and the lockdowns imposed by the governments in countries around the world have intensified gender inequalities, including violence against women. Gucci, through its Chime for Change initiative, and the Kering Foundation have teamed to launch a new campaign to fund nonprofit organizations supporting women and girls around the world.
“Now more than ever is the time to join together to protect the health, safety and human rights of girls and women around the world,” said Salma Hayek Pinault, who co-founded Chime for Change in 2013 and is a board director of the Kering Foundation.
By any measure, giving circles are one of the biggest growth areas in philanthropy. It’s no accident that giving circles are heavily female, and women of color are involved in giving circles at much higher rates than they are in traditional modes of philanthropic giving.
A simple giving circle definition from Philanthropy Together: “Giving Circles are groups of all shapes and sizes collaborating for change: like-minded individuals come together to pool their funds, share and discuss the issues that matter to them, and decide together where to give their money, time, and talents.” Giving circles enable individuals to leverage modest individual donations into a critical mass. They are by definition participatory, and the power of the collective provides individuals greater input and influence than were they giving in isolation.
Philanthropy Together places special emphasis on the role of traditionally underrepresented communities, noting:
“Rather than seeking stark divisions between approaches or themes within feminism, perhaps we should instead look for the many possibilities for productive coalitions.” – Sally J. Scholz
It’s no secret that art comments on, fights against, and breaks the molds of society. Sometimes, it even forms the basis from which activists and earth-shakers build platforms to enact real social change.
The Feminist Art Coalition (FAC) seeks to create a platform where art projects can build creative collaborations between artists and their societies, in exhibitions that give established institutions a way to give voice to their commitments to social justice and structural change. Supported by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, FAC connects art museums and nonprofit institutions to present a series of events beginning in Fall 2020, and continuing over the course of one year–a critical year, as we’ve mentioned, leading up to the next American presidential election.
COVID-19 is exposing long-standing disparities and inequities created by unjust policies and systems that have left communities vulnerable, in spite of powerful mobilizations by grassroots movements. Millions of people who work in essential care and service industries including homecare workers and house cleaners, restaurant, grocery, and delivery workers, and health and child care providers, are facing risks to their own health, emotional stress, and the economic insecurity that comes with the evolving landscape of managing the coronavirus outbreak.
Queer, trans, and cis women of color, Indigenous, and immigrant women and girls in particular make up a significant proportion of the essential workers in our communities showing up day after day to mitigate the transmission and impact of the virus. Even prior to this crisis, they faced widespread discrimination, harassment, and violence in the workplace and have been further marginalized by lack of health benefits or paid sick days, low wages, and job insecurity.
Cindy Southworth knows how it feels to be at the center of the fire. As the Executive Vice President for the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV), Southworth has found herself, like many nonprofit and crisis aid workers, pivoting almost daily to meet the needs of victims of domestic violence around the country.
Speaking to Women Moving Millions during a webinar session in early April, Southworth laid out the organization’s mission, as well as the deep plea for help from domestic violence organizations around the country.
“We want to get the message out that domestic violence shelters are still open,” she says. “What we’re all working to do is create a world where the idea of domestic violence no longer exists, where it doesn’t even seem fathomable that somebody would use violence and control to harm their partner. And in the meantime, we want to make sure that, until we create that new world with different gender norms and different social and cultural expectations, that we are serving every single survivor who needs and wants to reach out for help.”
Editor’s Note: The following announcement is from the Southern Black Girls and Women’s Consortium:
Black women will, as we always have, look out for the needs of our family, friends, and community.
Given the unprecedented turmoil of the COVID-19 outbreak many of us will need extraordinary help to care for our families, maintain our homes, and remind our communities to find joy, even in this.
The Southern Black Girls and Women’s Consortium (SBGWC) is a collective of funders, activists and community leaders working to advance the movements for Black girls and women in the Deep South. We are offering an immediate funding opportunity to support Black girls and women and the people who rely on them. The SBGWC COVID-19 fund will rapidly deploy resources to organizations that support Black girls and women in the South that may be experiencing financial crisis or uncertainty due to the coronavirus outbreak.
This year’s signature series from the Women’s Philanthropy Institute (WPI) focuses on a vast area of study — gender and technology. This subject is just beginning to get explored, and for good reason — it turns out there are significant differences in how women use technology to conduct their philanthropy. There are also key spaces online where women network and build on their work in philanthropy, and those spaces are influencing the direction of philanthropy writ large.
Today, WPI is launching its Plugged In Podcast series, which will explore different aspects of how gender and technology influence philanthropy. Speakers today include:
-Asha Curran, CEO, #GivingTuesday -Elizabeth Gore, President, Alice -Beth Kanter, Author and nonprofit innovator -Walle Mafolasire, Founder, Givelify -Teresa Younger, CEO and President, Ms. Foundation for Women