UN Women to provide $10.5 million in grants for empowerment projects

UN Women Executive Director Michelle Bachelet. Photo: UN Women/Ryan Brown

1 March 2012 – The United Nations agency mandated to promote gender equality today announced it will give out $10.5 million in grants to organizations working to advance economic and political empowerment of women in Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean, and Europe and Central Asia.

According to a news release issued by the UN Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women), grants will start at $200,000 for initiatives that “make tangible improvements in the lives of women and girls, from enabling women candidates to run for office, to managing resources to support themselves and their families.” Approved proposals will be announced in October.

“UN Women’s Fund for Gender Equality provides direct grants for women’s empowerment and political participation,” said Michelle Bachelet, Executive Director for UN Women during an event at the Commission on the Status of Women in New York.

“These investments are essential for women and also for the promotion of gender equality, democracy and inclusive economic growth.”

Ms. Bachelet also announced the grant recipients from the agency’s earlier call in October for proposals from the Arab States. Fifteen organizations will receive grants totalling $4.85 million to work on innovative programmes that range from advancing women’s political participation in Egypt, Libya and Yemen, to maximizing the use of technology for advocacy and fostering sustainable development initiatives run by women in rural Morocco, Algeria and the occupied Palestinian territories.

“At this moment of historic change, we cannot afford to leave women out. These grants will advance women’s efforts to achieve greater economic and political equality during this time of transition,” said Ms. Bachelet.

Since its creation in 2009, the Fund has invested a total of $43 million in 40 countries around the world for projects working for gender equality.

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