Government of Canada announces investment in women’s organizations on Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands
May 21, 2019 – Victoria, British Columbia – Department for Women and Gender Equality
Women’s organizations provide vital services in 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, Terry Duguid, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Member of Parliament for Winnipeg South, 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 up to $4.2 million in seven women’s organizations and Indigenous organizations serving women on Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands.
Parliamentary Secretary Duguid highlighted the organizations that will receive funding (please see the Backgrounder for more information and testimonials):
- Bridges for Women Society;
- Haven Society;
- Nanaimo Women's Resources Society;
- North Island Métis Association;
- SWOVA Community Development and Research Society;
- Victoria Sexual Assault Centre; and
- Westcoast Community Resources Society.
Funding for these projects stems from historic Budget 2018 investments in the Capacity-building Fund to support a sustainable women’s movement and the Gender-Based Violence Program to address gaps in support for underserved groups in Canada that experience gender-based violence.
“With our historic investments, 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, we are helping organizations on Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands 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
“With this new approach to sustainable funding, we are enabling women’s organizations on Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands to provide more services to the communities that need their help. This is an investment in a future where our economy and society will be transformed by advancing gender equality and preventing gender-based violence – for the benefit of all Canadians.”
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Women and Gender Equality
Member of Parliament for Winnipeg South
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.
To date, the Government of Canada has invested over $200 million to prevent gender-based violence, support survivors and their families, and create more responsive legal and justice systems.
Gender-based violence can have lifelong impacts on an individual’s physical, mental, sexual and reproductive health. Additionally, the effects can be serious and costly. Annually, the economic impact of intimate partner violence and sexual assault is estimated to be over $12 billion.
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 and give 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 7,000 individuals—world leaders, influencers, advocates, academics, activists, youth and journalists—from more than 160 countries, with an additional 100,000 people joining virtually.
Office of the Minister for Women and Gender Equality
Senior Communications Advisor
Department for Women and Gender Equality
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