Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is offering grants to organizations Supporting a New Wave of Youth-Led Activism for Gender Equality in 2020.
The Fourth World Conference on Women in 1995 in Beijing was heralded as a landmark moment for gender equality, both because of the declaration and platform developed at the conference and because of the more than 30,000 feminists gathered from around the world to jointly strategize for a better world.
25 years later, despite many hard-fought victories and leaps forward, the gender equality agenda still suffers from insufficient funding, regressive policies and social norms, and poor accountability. In some parts of the world, active opposition and rollbacks on rights mean that advocates are fighting just to hold ground, and new threats like the COVID-19 pandemic threaten to further unravel progress.
As we look ahead to the opportunity afforded by the Beijing+25 anniversary, then—particularly through the platform provided by the Generation Equality Forum (GEF) events organized by UN Women, Mexico, France, and civil society partners in 2021—we have the chance to advance progress on the Beijing agenda by securing bold new commitments to achieving gender equality to match the bold rhetoric that was adopted 25 years ago.
We will not achieve these new commitments without strong, focused advocacy all around the world, directed at those who hold power and resources: government policymakers, corporate leaders, media, and more. And the GEF will not live up to its name or its potential without centering and amplifying the creativity and demands of young people and in particular young Black women, indigenous women, and other women of colour, who are often marginalized or tokenized on global stages such as these.
In order to support a stronger wave of youth-led advocacy in 2021 and beyond, and in order to specifically seek out and fund young leaders from underrepresented and marginalized identities and communities, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is issuing an open request for proposals from groups interested in carrying out advocacy work in support of the GEF.
Worth of Award
They will invest in a portfolio of up to 10 recipients at $50,000 each, for a total of $500,000 allocated. These 12-month grants provided will each support:
- Up to 40% of resources (≤ $20,000) for core organizational activities and capacity.
- At least 60% of resources (≥ $30,000) specifically allocated to advocacy activities around the GEF and/or in-country advocacy focused on one of the six GEF Action Coalition themes (gender-based violence, economic justice and rights, bodily autonomy and sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR), feminist action for climate justice, technology and innovation for gender equality, and feminist movements and leadership).
To be considered, applicants must:
- Have executives or leadership teams primarily (>60%) comprised of girls, young women and/or trans and intersex youth, under the age of 30.
- Be a registered organization or submit as part of a collective application where at least one participant is legally registered and able to receive grant funding from a U.S. private foundation. Note: If applying under a fiscal sponsor, please include that organization under “Organization Name” in the application site. Please see Frequently Asked Questions below to learn more about a fiscal sponsor.
- Demonstrate some familiarity with the Generation Equality Forum and/or the Beijing+25 processes, even if there has not been deep engagement to-date.
- Present a clear vision for how their work will result in policy and/or resource commitments and a theory of change that links to commitments.
- Demonstrate an ability to effectively champion gender equality priorities with key decision-makers.
Additional preference and weight will be given to:
- Applicants led by girls, young women, and/or trans and intersex youth who are Black, Indigenous, or people of colour.
- Applicants headquartered in the global south.
- Applicants that have not previously received direct Gates Foundation funding.
How to Apply
- A preview of the application instructions and template can be found on their website
- However, to apply you must select the “Apply” button in the upper corner of their page and log into the application portal.
- You are required to submit either Microsoft Word® or PDF document; no more than four pages in length, including a one-page budget.
- Please do not include a cover sheet with your proposal.
- A cover sheet will be automatically generated from your registration data.
Deadline: Applications close on October 21, 2020. 11:30a.m. U.S. PDT