Posted by: charityinfo | October 21, 2011

Global Issues, Global Need: The Global Fund for Women

Women all over the world and in every walk of life face challenges beyond simply existing and trying to get by. On top of that, women must deal with the pressures and prejudices of a world weighed against them. Be it an act as barbaric as female genital mutilation or as socially accepted as a casual sexist joke, women are too often treated as the lesser sex; and in some cases, as less than human. The Global Fund for Women (GFW), founded in 1987 by Anne Firth Murray, Frances Kissling, and Laura Lederer, was formed with the expressed purpose of advancing women’s rights across the world.

The GFW does this by issuing grants in several areas of women’s rights, such as: bringing an end to gender-based violence; advancing health and reproductive rights; ensuring justice; increasing political participation; increasing scholastic opportunity; and fostering social change through philanthropy. To date, the Global Fund for Women has issued almost $94 million in grants to 172 countries. In the 2009 fiscal year alone, the GFW issued more than 650 grants worth over $8.5 million.

The GFW puts an emphasis on programs which provide women with the resources they need to enact change in their communities. However, as some women are susceptible to danger whenever they open their mouths to voice the idea of improvement and mobilization, the Global Fund for Women also tries to make sure women’s rights defenders groups are well funded. The GFW also engages women by giving them the materials to do something as simple as host a house party to educate others about the charity’s work or to contact their politicians in support of the United Nations-adopted Resolution 1325 which is a landmark achievement in women’s rights that has been too slowly implemented.

Most of all, through the Global Fund for Women, women everywhere have a little more opportunity and a little more hope for a better tomorrow.

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