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Women and Girls fund launched

Commitment to enhance gender equality and women’s rights internationally.

Women and girls in Malawi, Rwanda and Zambia will be given the opportunity to design and deliver a new fund to advance gender equality and the rights of women and girls in their own countries.

The new Women and Girls Fund is supported by £3 million from the Scottish Government’s International Development Fund and will be delivered over four years.

The lead delivery partner for the Fund is the international research consultancy Ecorys, working in collaboration with FAWE (Forum for African Women Educationalists) in three of the Scottish Government’s International Development partner countries. The fund will take a participatory approach, being co-developed by women and girls, and women and girl-led organisations in the three countries.

International Development Minister Kaukab Stewart said:

“Gender inequality remains one of the greatest human rights challenges globally, and we must work together to address this. Reflecting our commitment to equalise power, the Women and Girls Fund will provide direct support to local women and girl-led organisations in our Sub-Saharan African partner countries.

“Direct funding is central to driving transformational change; this fund will empower women and girls, locally, to define and meet their own priorities.

“As we mark International Women’s Day, it is fitting that we launch this incredibly valuable programme, which puts feminist principles into action and will help us to advocate for a world without gender inequality.”

Ecorys Team Leader Mpala Nkonkomalimba said:

“The funding opportunity cannot be coming at a more opportune time, as women and girls are still struggling to have voice in decision making processes and with the global economic downturn, they continue to be the face of poverty.

“Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) capacities to respond to the many emerging global and national issues affecting women and girls needs to be built and what is exciting is that the fund is planned to be participatory with CSOs themselves co-creating the funding mechanism.

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