It’s About to Get Real: Feminist Giving Coming Out in September

Big news! My book, Feminist Giving: Creating New Frontiers in Social Change, is finally coming out!

feminist giving
Feminist Giving: Creating New Frontiers in Social Change is due out in September 2022. The book features over 100 leaders and chronicles the history of the women’s funding movement. (Image Credit: Feminist Giving)

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.

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F-GIRL Interview: Jessica Ryckman on Creating More Access to Justice

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.

Jessica Ryckman, Director of Fellowships, Equal Justice Works. (Image credit: Jessica Ryckman)

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.

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Deepening Support for Feminist Activism through Women’s Funds 

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.

Chiara de Luca, Feminist researcher. (Image credit: Chiara de Luca)

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. 

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Activist and Expert Allison Fine: Roadmap for Post-Roe Philanthropy

Elizabeth Warren has described the decades-long fight to protect Roe as standing high up on a ledge, and every year the ledge has gotten smaller and smaller. The upcoming SCOTUS ruling overturning Roe v. Wade removes the last sliver of the ledge.  

Allison Fine at a pro-choice rally in Tarrytown, New York on May 14, 2022. (Image credit: Allison Fine)

Overturning Roe has been the goal of the reactionary Right: to whitewash America by oppressing women and people of color. It’s not a byproduct of their relentless 40-year effort to turn back the clock, it is the point.

To be clear, women living in states like Oklahoma, Louisiana and Alabama have been living in a post-Roe world for a while. Still, it’s one thing not to have limited access, it’s another to be imprisoned for murder. 

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New Funding for Women: This Week’s Top 10 Feminist Giving Moves

The new HS Chau Women in Enterprising Science Program offers fellows the opportunity to receive $1 million in funding for research. (Image credit: HS Chau Women in Enterprising Science Program)

1: New HS Chau Women in Enterprising Science Program Launches from the Innovative Genomics Institute: The new program will work to enhance “gender equity in bio-entrepreneurship.” With philanthropic support from the foundation of Solina Chau Hoi Shuen (co-founder of Horizons Ventures in Hong Kong), the program is now accepting proposals from entrepreneurs “seeking to translate genomics research into impactful solutions to real-world challenges and advance the representation of women founders in biotechnology.” More information here.

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Exposing The Say-Do Gap for Racial Justice Giving: WPI’s New Report

Well hello my philanthro community! It’s great to be back at my Philanthropy Women dashboard, ready to share some insights on feminist giving and dive into the latest news on gender equality.

This week, I’d like to discuss the newest report from Women’s Philanthropy Institute entitled Racial Justice, Gender and Generosity. The report explores the giving trends of a sample 2,073 US households surveyed in May of 2021, and asks them questions about their involvement with and giving behavior related to racial justice causes.

The latest report from the Women’s Philanthropy Institute explores racial justice, gender and generosity. (Image credit: WPI)

The report uncovers some significant findings, including that more than 4 in 10 U.S. households (42.0%) supported or were actively involved in racial justice protests of 2020. This was a surprisingly high number in my mind, one that gives me renewed hope for our country and the shared value we place on racial equality.

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2% of 2% is Not Much: Why Feminism Grows At Snail’s Pace (And Updates)

Greetings, Friends! Hope you are all well and enjoying life as best you can. We continue to watch the scene on feminist giving news, and I still receive tons of emails pitching stories for PW. It pains me that I do not have the time to do more writing. I have had to increase my therapy caseload to cover the downsizing of PW, so my time for research and writing is more limited now.

Google and other corporations fund initiatives for women and girls and release publicity suggesting that they are big champions of the cause. At the same time, these corporations continue to fund anti-feminist legislators through the Republican State Leadership Committee. See details in the feminist happenings listed at the end of this post. (Image credit: Google on Twitter)

When I get time to come back to PW, one of the things I like to do just to cheer myself up is to take a random stroll through the PW Funder Database. It just makes me feel better about the world to know that funders exist that are putting real dollars into gender equality strategies every day.

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Awakening: The Power of #MeToo to Make the Personal Political

Editor’s Note: The following essay by Dr. Susan M. Blaustein, Founder and Executive Director, WomenStrong International, discusses the transformational potential of #MeToo to empower change locally and globally.

In their remarkable new book Awakening about the global #MeToo movement, feminist scholars Rachel Vogelstein and Meighan Stone have shined a light on the courage, creativity, and resilience of women all over the world who have alchemized their pain as survivors of sexual violence into fierce, undaunted activism. 

#meToo
Awakening by Rachel Vogelstein and Meighan Stone explores the way #MeToo is connecting women across the globe. (Image credit: PublicAffairs on Instagram)

These brave women, from Brazil to Tunisia to Nigeria to Sweden and myriad places in between, have harnessed available digital technologies to share their experiences of sexual harassment and assault, connect with other women, sound the alarm loudly, and press for change. They’re fighting not only for victims’ safety in reporting these crimes and accountability for their perpetrators; enraged and emboldened, they’re aiming to institutionalize legal protections and disrupt the prevailing cultural and religious moraes that have long sanctioned violence against women in the first place.

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Plan Report: Girls Fear For Safety from Misinformation Online

As our young women come up in the world, they face a deluge of information online, much of which is contributing to their sense of safety, or lack thereof. A new report from Plan International helps to break down the ways that online disinformation is impacting the lives of girls ages 15 to 24 around the world.

The Truth Gap, a new report from Plan International, helps identify the ways that young women and girls are being impacted by online disinformation. (Image credit: Plan International)

The report, The Truth Gap, helps to explain how girls and young women in 33 countries are experiencing information they find online. The report discovered that one in five girls (20%) feels unsafe due to false information that comes from the internet.

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Gender Avenger and Female Quotient Join to Fight for Equality

As we have noted before here on Philanthropy Women, there are many reasons why it is very hard to sustain a nonprofit or a business that provides a gender lens. There are also frequently economies of scale that can be realized when two entities with overlapping missions join together to enhance their work. A recent announcement from Gender Avenger and The Female Quotient highlights both of these dynamics.

Image Credit: The Female Quotient and Gender Avenger

Yesterday, Gender Avenger and The Female Quotient announced that they will be merging. Gender Avenger, a nonprofit that provides data and tools about gender discrimination in public dialogue, announced today that it is joining forces with The Female Quotient (The FQ), a for-profit company “changing the equation and closing the gaps” in gender equality. According to the press release, the collaboration “aims to remove barriers and break down the intimidating scale of the equality conversation happening all around the world.”

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