Foundations Supporting Women Empowerment Programs

Neda Ali (Editor)

3rd Jun'21
Foundations Supporting Women Empowerment Programs | OpenGrowth

Women empowerment programs

According to UNICEF, girls’ education saves millions of lives. More educated women tend to be healthier, work and earn more income, have fewer children, and provide better health care and education to their children.

There are several individuals, NGOs, foundations working for the welfare of women and the change they have brought can be seen. Yet, despite progress, gender inequality and discrimination still prevail across the globe. One in three women experiences violence in two-thirds. Complications from pregnancy are a leading cause of death for adolescent girls; 214 million women want to avoid or delay pregnancy but are not using effective contraception, and women are still dramatically underrepresented in positions of economic and political leadership. Around 360,000 women die during pregnancy and childbirth; 14, and adolescent girls become mothers every year. Women represent nearly two-thirds of the world’s illiterate, 31 million girls are still out of school around the world.

While women have made tremendous strides, the reality is we are still a hundred years away from closing the gender gap. Equality will be achieved when women and girls will be pursuing and realizing their fullest potential. It’s girls feeling safe in their communities—and their homes. Equality is women and girls having a choice over their bodies and their own lives. And it’s more women in positions of power—and redefining what power is.


Below mentioned are a list of some foundations actively working to bring the change:

1. United Nations Foundation

The United Nations (UN) Foundation believes that empowering women and girls with educational and economic opportunities and securing their health and human rights is one of the best investments we can make for families, communities, and the world. 

Every safe, educated, healthy, and empowered girl or woman has the potential to transform her family, community, economy, and society.

It works with NGO, corporate, and government partners to promote gender equality; advance sexual and reproductive health and rights (including family planning); advocate for increased resources and funding for programs and activities benefitting adolescent girls; eliminate gender-based violence; combat climate change; a, and prove maternal health care using integrated health systems and mobile technology.

The UN Foundation has designed different challenges, solutions, and projects with the vision that All girls, no matter where they live, have the opportunity to become educated, healthy, safe, counted, and positioned to be the next generation of leaders.


2. Nike Foundation

Nike Foundation invests in adolescent girls. The foundation believes that the 250 million girls living in poverty can play a crucial role in solving the most persistent development problems facing the world today. The foundation states “When a girl in the developing world is enabled to realize her full potential, she isn’t the only one who escapes poverty. She brings her family, community, and country with her.”

Nike foundation came up with a movement titled ‘Girl Effect’. The rationale behind the girl effect theory is that teen girls have the unique potential to stop poverty before it starts. The answer to poverty should not be sought in government but the earning power of impoverished adolescents. It insists that helping girls become economically productive is smart economics and a matter of human rights. The girl effect’s economic empowerment principles promote financial literacy education, business development training, and access to credit and savings accounts.

Women empowerment

Ways To Empower Women Globally

Empowerment includes the action of raising the status of women through education, raising awareness, literacy, and training.  To know 7 ways to empower women globally, click here:


3. Mama Cash

Mama Cash supports women, girls, and trans people, and intersex people who fight for their rights. Mama Cash mobilizes resources from individuals and institutions, makes grants to these self-led, feminist organizations, and helps to build the partnerships and networks needed to successfully defend and advance women’s, girls’, trans, and intersex people’s human rights globally. It is a risk-taking organization that mainly funds pioneering, taboo-breaking, and risk-taking initiatives. The main belief of Mama Cash is that by investing in women and girls, the world could become more peaceful, and more sustainable.

Each year, Mama Cash supports about 100 courageous groups, organizations, networks, and women’s funds that are led by women, girls, and trans people. The supported projects focus on injustices that would otherwise go unnoticed, that need to be challenged, and that demand courage and vision to change. They build upon strategic opportunities to bring about change at the community, national, regional, and global levels.

It provides both financial and non-financial support to women, girls, and trans rights organizations worldwide.


4. Summit Foundation

The Summit Foundation supports the transformation of harmful, gender-based social norms. It empowers marginalized girls by transforming their social, reproductive, and economic lives. It holds the belief that focusing on women is beneficial in diverse ways – economies will grow, poverty rates will decline, health indicators of women and children will improve and the environment will benefit. Their vision is that girls and women achieve full equality and are fully empowered, valued by their families and communities, and have viable pathways to quality education, health, employment, and fully participate in civic and political life. We also envision a world where women and girls have the ability and autonomy to make decisions about their sexual and reproductive lives, free from discrimination, coercion, and violence.

The main focused area of Summit Foundation are:

  • Ensure Health Services Access
  • Provide Sexuality Education
  • Enable the Continuation of Education
  • Provide Linkages to Economic Opportunities
  • Eliminate Gender Discrimination
  • Provide Youth Community Spaces
  • End Child Marriage


5. Ford Foundation

The fund seeks to support the leadership of low-income women, women of color, Indigenous women, and migrant women in the United States and transnationally to create a future in which all girls and women—is, transgender, and gender non-conforming—can live, learn, and work with safety and dignity.

Ford Foundation is working with visionary leaders and organizations to change social structures and institutions so that everyone has the opportunity to achieve their full potential and have a voice in decisions that affect them. Ford Foundation commits to social justice. The gender-focused program area of the Ford Foundation is dedicated to strengthening sexual and reproductive health and rights and encouraging comprehensive sexuality education and evidence-based public discourse on sexuality.

 Ford Foundation

6. International Development Exchange

IDEX is a social change organization challenging social and economic forces that marginalize people worldwide. They build mutually empowering alliances with partner organizations that share a common vision to confront global systems of inequality, through channeling funds, information sharing, networking, capacity building, and outreach. 

International Development Exchange (IDEX) is working with the mission that empowering women is the most effective way of fighting poverty.

IDEX focuses on the most remote and neglected places and finds organizations that don’t yet have the kind of funding they need but have enough internal structures and potential to grow. IDEX works in solidarity with activists in the developing world; embraces humility and cultural sensitivity so the Global North can learn from and join forces with the local leaders who have championed social change.


7. Global Partnership for Education

GPE is the largest global fund solely dedicated to transforming education in lower-income countries, and a unique, multi-stakeholder partnership. We work to deliver quality education so that every girl and boy can have hope, opportunity, and agency. The Global Partnership for Education has been delivering funds and supporting solutions to build strong and resilient education systems so that more children in the poorest countries, especially girls, get the education they need to contribute to building a more prosperous and sustainable world.

It works to ensure that more girls enroll in school and receive a good quality education. GPE wants all girls in GPE-endorsed countries to complete primary school and go on to secondary school in a safe, supportive, learning environment.

GPE priorities include:

  • Increase gender parity and enrollment overall
  • Provide strong incentives, technical and financial support to developing country partners, to include gender strategies in their education plans
  • Support the enrollment of out-of-school girls into primary school
  • Ensure that girls make the crucial transition from primary to secondary school

If you are willing to bring worldwide change, one of the greatest ways you can make a difference is by volunteering for women’s empowerment and girls’ education. To know more details about this, click here:


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