Government of Canada announces investment in women’s organization in Etobicoke

News release

Rexdale Women’s Centre is receiving funding to ensure it can continue providing essential supports to women and their families

April 23, 2019 – Toronto, Ontario – Department for Women and Gender Equality

Women’s organizations provide vital services to our communities, supporting women and girls to be financially secure, free from violence, and able to fully participate in all aspects of our economy and society. Yet for far too long they have been chronically underfunded, underestimated and undermined. The Government of Canada recognizes that women’s organizations are the lifeblood of the women’s movement and that maintaining and growing their ability to do this important work is the most effective way to advance gender equality.

That’s why today, the Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science and Sport and Member of Parliament for Etobicoke North, on behalf of the Honourable Maryam Monsef, Minister of International Development and Minister for Women and Gender Equality, announced that the Government of Canada is investing $129,032 in the Rexdale Women’s Centre. This funding will help build the organization’s capacity to support women using innovative new techniques, including applying Gender-based Analysis Plus to their services, and sharing this knowledge with sister organizations so that the wider community can better support immigrant, refugee, and newcomer women.

The Rexdale Women’s Centre is one of more than 250 women’s organization, and Indigenous organizations serving women across Canada receiving funding under the Capacity-building Fund. The investment stems from the Budget 2018 announcement of $100 million over five years to support a viable and sustainable women’s movement across Canada.


“With this historic investment, we recognize the women and women’s organizations breaking through barriers, and express our gratitude to those who have been doing this work for decades on little more than a shoestring budget. The women’s movement across Canada has been asking for a reliable, predictable and accessible source of funds to ensure the sustainability of their work. Our government listened. With stable and flexible funding for the Rexdale Women’s Centre, they will be able to grow and endure, because we know that investing in women’s organizations is the most effective way to advance gender equality. By supporting a movement that has achieved amazing results, we are growing the middle class, strengthening families and communities, and creating lasting change that benefits everyone.”

The Honourable Maryam Monsef, P.C., M.P.
Minister of International Development and Minister for Women and Gender Equality

“For more than 30 years, the Rexdale Women’s Centre has been supporting immigrant, refugee, and newcomer women to thrive in our community by helping them feel less isolated, teaching them new skills, and developing culturally sensitive programs that target their unique needs. I am proud that a vital part of our community is receiving this critical funding to maintain and grow their impact for the women and families in Etobicoke.”

The Honourable Kirsty Duncan, P.C., M.P.
Minister for Science and Sport
Member of Parliament for Etobicoke North

“Our vision is for immigrant, refugee and newcomer women and their families to effectively settle and integrate into Canadian society. We are grateful to the Government of Canada for investing in our capacity to help women be safe, healthy, and financially secure, regardless of their background or circumstances.”

Fatima Filippi, Executive Director
Rexdale Women's Centre

Quick facts

  • 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 2019–20, in the Department for Women and Gender Equality’s Women’s Program. This means that by 2023–24, the Women’s Program, which supports eligible organizations to carry out projects to advance equality by addressing systemic barriers, will total $100 million annually. 

  • This 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 and inequality across the country.

  • Women continue to be disproportionately affected by economic insecurity. In 2015, women in Canada earned just 88 cents for every dollar earned by men. They are also much more likely to work on a part-time basis, making up 76% of all part-time workers, with 25% of women reporting childcare responsibilities as their reason for working part-time.

  • Some populations are more likely to experience violence and may face unique barriers and challenges that put them at particular risk (Statistics Canada, 2015).

  • Canada will host the Women Deliver 2019 Conference from June 3 to 6, 2019, in Vancouver, British Columbia. Held every three years, it is the world’s largest gathering on gender equality and the health, rights and well-being of women and girls. 

  • The conference is part of a global movement to promote gender equality worldwide that gives voice to a broad spectrum of people, including Indigenous peoples, youth and those living in conflict and crisis settings. It will bring together more than 6,000 individuals—world leaders, influencers, advocates, academics, activists, youth and journalists—from more than 160 countries, with an additional 100,000 people joining virtually.

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Braeson Holland
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister for Women and Gender Equality

Valérie Haché
Senior Communications Advisor
Department for Women and Gender Equality

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