Vote for the G.O.A.T! Join in the Fun and Build Women’s Leadership

Plan International USA is working to build women’s leadership by inviting young people ages 13-22 to “Vote for the GOAT (Greatest of All Time).” While this acronym usually applies to football stars and other sports legends, Plan is using the acronym in a much for fun, purposeful, and world-changing way. Specifically, Plan’s GOAT competition refers to the greatest female, femme or nonbinary person advancing gender equality across the categories of visibility or representation, women’s health, equal opportunity, and gender-based violence.

build women's leadership
Plan International is helping to stimulate more awareness about gender equality with its Vote for the GOAT competition. (Image credit: Plan International)

Plan International USA—an independent development and humanitarian organization advancing children’s rights and equality for girls—established the “Vote for the G.O.A.T” competition to heighten awareness about those working on behalf of gender equity, and to benefit needy women and families in the developing world.

According to Plan, “For every 500-1,000 votes an individual G.O.A.T. receives, an actual goat will be donated on their behalf through Plan’s Gifts of Hope to a community in Indonesia.” Plan notes that this gift can provide a family with a path to financial stability and economic independence, which, among other things, can help prevent girls from being married off while still young.

Before voting occurs, participants are asked to register and nominate a gender equality champion. This individual doesn’t have to be somebody well-known; it could be a friend, family member or someone in the community. The nominator will outline who that person is, and how they are affecting the gender equality landscape. There is no limit on the number of nominations. Next, the top 32 nominees will move on to the “Vote for the G.O.A.T” competition, and there will be successive rounds of voting until a G.O.A.T. is decided upon.

Following each tournament round of voting, Plan will donate additional Gifts of Hope on behalf of the winners. These gifts include such tangible items as livestock, water, first-aid kits, emergency and livelihood supplies, as well as funds to help stop sex trafficking and reduce gender inequity.

“Countless girls, women and nonbinary influencers are changing and impacting our lives, culture and politics in amazing ways,” said Malika, Plan International USA’s Youth Advisor. “But despite such incredible accomplishments, many don’t receive the recognition they deserve. It’s high time we shine a light on them and the tremendous work they’re undertaking.”

“There’s room for improvement as a society when it comes to evening the playing field for girls,” said Dr. Tessie San Martin, President and CEO of Plan International USA. “From government representation, to the portrayal of girls and women in media, to women holding influential seats in the private sector, more can and should be done. Young people have proven they can lead that movement, so we’re giving them the platform to do so.”

Plan International USA is an independent development and humanitarian organization advancing girls’ equality and children’s rights. It is part of the Plan International network of collaborative partnerships between 21 national offices and more than 50 program offices. Plan International was established in 1937 by a journalist and refugee worker assisting children affected by the Spanish Civil War. In its early years, Plan was heavily focused on assisting children displaced by WWII, and alleviating poverty in war-torn areas of Europe. Since the 1960s, its emphasis has shifted to the developing world, and of late Plan has increasingly focused on improving the lives of girls. Plan’s “Because I am a Girl” campaign launched on the first International Day of the Girl in 2012, and its programs impacted four million girls. Currently, Plan’s programs reach over 56 million children in more than 50 developing countries. Plan is a 501(c)(3) headquartered in Warwick, Rhode Island with an office in Washington, D.C.

Philanthropy Women has highlighted Plan USA’s work in a number of articles including Platforms for Good: Summer Sanders and Plan International USA, 100&Change: Plan and 99 Other Organizations Vie for $100 Million, Plan Probes Adolescent Thought and Behavior Re: Gender Equality, and Plan Gets Largest Donation Ever, Announces Deeper Focus on Girls.


Philanthropy Women covers funding for gender equity in all sectors of society. We want to significantly shift public discourse, particularly in philanthropy, toward increased action for gender equality. You can support our work and access unlimited and premium content with one of our subscriptions.

In The News

Author: Tim Lehnert

Tim Lehnert is a writer and editor who lives in Cranston, Rhode Island. His articles and essays have appeared in the Boston Globe, the Providence Journal, Rhode Island Monthly, the Boston Herald, the Christian Science Monitor, and elsewhere. He is the author of the book Rhode Island 101, and has published short fiction for kids and adults in a number of literary journals and magazines. He received an M.A. in Political Science from McGill University, and an M.A. in English from California State University, Northridge.

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