The has unveiled a five-year focused on supporting women and girls of color as a means to promote gender equity and advance democracy.
The strategic plan lays out six core strategies — ramping up the organization's grantmaking and philanthropic advocacy; building capacity in support of movement leaders and social justice infrastructure; ramping up its policy and advocacy efforts; enhancing strategic communications with the aim of sharpening and amplifying the organization's messaging; maximizing collective impact through a new Building Connections Initiative; and building political power through the creation of its first 501(c)(4) fund. In addition, the foundation will invest $25 million over the next five years in organizations led by and for women of color and will work with grantees to build their capacity and strengthen their policy advocacy efforts.
By establishing a 501(c)(4) fund, the foundation intends to support local grassroots leaders as they develop long-term political strategies designed to elect women and advance legislation and policies on issues that affect the lives of women and girls, especially those of color. In addition, through the Building Connections Initiative, the organization will work to increase coordination across social movements, sectors, and generations and maximize collective impact around issues affecting women and girls of color.
"An accurate 'herstory' tells us that women of color have been on the frontlines of nearly every movement in this country — from reproductive rights, immigrant rights, and civil rights, to economic justice, and criminal justice reform," said the organization's president and CEO, Teresa C. Younger. "We are a political force to be reckoned with, and in 2018 we delivered unprecedented electoral wins in Alabama, Georgia, and New York — yet we are sorely underrepresented in philanthropic investment, with only 2 percent of that spending going to women and girls of color. It's time that we champion and do all we can to ensure that women and girls of color are in power, at the tables of power, and are supported as movement leaders."
(Photo credit: Ms. Foundation for Women)