Canada and partners announce new legacy investments to support women’s rights and gender equality at home and abroad
June 2, 2019 - Vancouver, British Columbia - Global Affairs Canada
Canada is changing how it supports gender equality at home and abroad. Women’s rights organizations and movements are at the forefront of human rights, gender equality and sustainable development. They are innovating with new financial models and challenging how decisions for control over resources are made. Yet these groups continue to be underfunded and under-resourced.
That’s why today, the Honourable Maryam Monsef, Minister of International Development and Minister for Women and Gender Equality, announced that the Government of Canada is reshaping how it supports women’s rights organizations, domestically and internationally, to build a legacy for gender equality and rights.
Through the Department for Women and Gender Equality, the Government of Canada is entering into three innovative funding agreements with organizations that will match up to $30 million of federal funding into gender equality efforts. The new matching partnerships with Community Foundations of Canada, Canadian Women’s Foundation and Grand Challenges Canada, will provide funding to women’s organizations in Canada and will accelerate gender equality from coast to coast to coast.
Through Global Affairs Canada, the government is investing $300 million to bring the granting, philanthropic and investment worlds together into a single platform to mobilize unprecedented levels of resources for women’s rights organizations and movements in developing countries. Today, the Government of Canada is announcing its intention to work with the Equality Fund, selected through a competitive process, to establish this innovative platform.
The Equality Fund will not only create a sustainable and predictable source of funding for women’s rights organizations and movements in developing countries, but will also shift how investment decisions are made for gender equality outcomes: by providing resources directly to women’s rights organizations and by making investments that support gender equality. The Equality Fund has mobilized initial investments of $100 million as a result of the Government of Canada’s initial $300 million commitment. The Equality Fund will also mobilize funding for women’s rights organizations in Canada.
With the partnerships announced today, over the next 15 years the Equality Fund will mobilize more than $1 billion in resources to empower women and girls for lasting change around the world.
“Women’s rights are challenged the world over. With the Equality Fund and domestic partnerships announced today, Canadians are shifting the power to women’s rights organizations and supporting women pushing back against the push back. Behind this effort is Canada’s best in philanthropy, feminist leadership, banking and investment, and international development. Canada secures its spot as a leading donor for women’s rights and gender equality globally. We’re tapping into the momentum from the Women Deliver 2019 Conference to mobilize for power, progress and change for everyone, everywhere.”
- Maryam Monsef, Minister of International Development and Minister for Women and Gender Equality
Budget 2018 announced $100 million over five years to support a viable and sustainable women’s movement across Canada. Adding to this historic investment, Budget 2019 proposes to invest a further $160 million over five years, starting in 2019 to 2020, in the Department for Women and Gender Equality’s Women’s Program. This means that by 2023 to 2024, the Women’s Program, which supports eligible organizations to carry out projects to advance equality by addressing systemic barriers, will total $100 million annually.
Domestic funding will enable women’s organizations and Indigenous organizations serving women to tackle systemic barriers impeding women’s progress, while recognizing and addressing the diverse experiences of gender inequality across the country.
In Budgets 2017 and 2018, Canada committed to modernizing its international assistance to deliver better results, improve transparency and foster greater innovation.
The Equality Fund is the first global platform that brings together the private sector, philanthropists and governments to strengthen women’s organizations and movements by giving them sustainable and flexible funding.
Introduced in 2017, Canada’s Feminist International Assistance Policy has secured Canada’s spot as a top donor globally to women’s rights organizations and gender equality.
- Backgrounder - Department for Women and Gender Equality - Investing in innovative cross-sector partnerships to advance gender equality
- Backgrounder – Global Affairs Canada - The Equality Fund: Transforming the way we support women’s organizations and movements working to advance women’s rights and gender equality
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