Government of Canada Invests Over $1 Million to Advance Gender Equality for Indigenous Women and Girls

News release

March 29, 2021 – Ottawa – Women and Gender Equality Canada

Indigenous women and girls experience systemic, disproportionate and intolerable inequities in many areas of their lives. The Government of Canada is committed to putting an end to this by supporting organizations that play a critical role in empowering Indigenous women and girls to fully participate in all areas of our economic and social life.

Today, the Honourable Maryam Monsef, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Rural Economic Development, and the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, announced over $1 million for two projects that will advance gender equality from an Indigenous perspective.

The Congress of Aboriginal Peoples received $585,866 and the National Association of Friendship Centres received $750,000 from Women and Gender Equality Canada to increase their capacity and to promote culturally relevant gender equality initiatives in their communities.

With this funding, the Congress of Aboriginal Peoples will undertake research to create a “Sustainability Guide” and a “Gender Equality Guide” which together, will be used by participating members to strengthen their ability to support Indigenous women and girls. The National Association of Friendship Centres will carry out a series of activities to guide the creation of resource manuals that share best practices on leadership, board governance, Indigenous-specific gender-based analysis, and partnership development. These initiatives will help build national, provincial/territorial, and local capacity to better support Indigenous women and girls.

These investments will help organizations like the Congress of Aboriginal Peoples and the National Association of Friendship Centres support Indigenous women and their communities. The Government of Canada will continue to work alongside our Indigenous partners to build a more inclusive and equal Canada for everyone. 

Quotes

"Indigenous organizations play a critical role in removing barriers for women and girls across our country. Since November 2015, our government has invested more than $83 million to support over 170 organizations that advance equality for Indigenous women, girls and 2SLBGTQQIA+ people. Together, partnerships like these are forging a path towards reconciliation and creating communities that are safer and more equal for everyone."

The Honourable Maryam Monsef, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Rural Economic Development

"The Government of Canada is committed to ensuring that Indigenous, First Nations, Inuit and Métis women, girls and 2SLGBTQQIA+ are supported in their communities. I commend my colleague Minister Monsef for helping Indigenous organizations advance gender equality from an Indigenous perspective. By providing culturally sensitive support to Indigenous women and girls, we’re making sure they have the appropriate resources and tools they need to succeed – now, and in the future.”

The Honourable Carolyn Bennett, M.D., P.C., M.P., Minister of Crown- Indigenous Relations

"The Congress of Aboriginal Peoples (CAP) would like to thank WAGE for this funding, in support of the project, "Keeping Toolkits Off the Shelf: Building Capacity for Sustainable Gender Equality Programming". This 3-year project will help CAP, provincial partners and Indigenous organizations get more mileage out of their work on gender equity. In this project, staff will look at project outcomes and find ways to keep programs, resources and tools in use over the long run. This project will help projects and programs to be self-sustaining, create standards that improve their impact, and it will strengthen partnerships with Indigenous organizations across Canada and build capacity for future gender equality programs."

National Chief Elmer St Pierre.

Friendship Centres are leaders in achieving the full participation of women in the economic, social and democratic life across Canada, and has been since its inception nearly 60 years ago.

"With the funding, the National Association of Friendship Centres (NAFC) intends to build upon this achievement by providing additional and essential training and capacity development for urban Indigenous women and 2SLGTBQQIA people. This training will build the capacity of urban Indigenous women and gender diverse leaders to be able to better build their partnerships, increase the effectiveness of their collaborations and learn how to successfully network."

Jocelyn Formsma, Executive Director, National Association of Friendship Centres

Quick facts

  • Budget 2018 announced $100 million over five years to support a viable and sustainable women’s movement across Canada. Budget 2019 invested a further $160 million over five years, starting in 2019–20, in Women and Gender Equality Canada’s Women’s Program.

  • Since November 2015, Women and Gender Equality Canada has provided total funding of over $83 million to more than 170 organizations working to achieve equality for Indigenous women and girls, commemorate the lives of missing and murdered Indigenous women, girls, and LGBTQ and two-spirit people, as well as encourage Indigenous women’s innovations, entrepreneurial spirit and leadership. Of this, over $13 million has supported 110 projects through the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIWG) Commemoration Fund.

  • On February 11, 2021, Women and Gender Equality Canada announced a call for proposals that will provide $100 million to eligible organizations to support a feminist response and recovery from the impacts of the pandemic, prioritizing projects addressing barriers for Indigenous women and other underrepresented women.

Associated links

Contacts

Marie-Pier Baril
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Rural Economic Development
613-295-8123

Media Relations
Women and Gender Equality Canada
1-855-969-9922

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