Fund for Gender Equality

Photo: Adamu Gudeta / UEWCA, Ethiopia.

The Fund for Gender Equality is UN Women’s global grant­making mechanism dedicated to the economic and political empowerment of women worldwide. Guided by UN Women’s mandate, the Fund provides technical and financial support to high-impact, innovative initiatives from women-led civil society organizations that demonstrate concrete results on the ground, especially for women in situations of marginalization. Since its launch in 2009, the Fund has delivered grants of USD 64 million to 120 grantee programmes in 80 countries, touching the lives of more than 10 million direct beneficiaries.

In 2015, the Fund for Gender Equality awarded USD 7.3 million in grants to 24 top-quality programmes to be implemented in 2016-2018 in six regions – East and Southern Africa, West and Central Africa, Americas and the Caribbean, Arab States, Asia and the Pacific, and Europe and Central Asia. The 24 new programmes will reach more than 325,000 direct beneficiaries, of which 45 per cent come from low-income countries and approximately 53 per cent are based in fragile states.

Through this new grant-making cycle, UN Women has reaffirmed its commitment to supporting and strengthening women’s organizations as catalyzers of change and as critical players to achieve gender equality and the sustainable development agenda. The new portfolio will meaningfully contribute to SDG5 on Gender Equality, as well as to at least another 9 Goals, reflecting the multi-dimensional nature of women’s empowerment. 

The Fund provides grants on a competitive basis within the following thematic areas:

Women’s economic empowerment – to increase women’s access to and control over decision-making, land, technology, credit, livelihoods and other means of production and social protection.

Women’s political empowerment – to support  women in taking on leadership roles and participating more fully in political processes and in all spheres of public life. Young women leaders are also a particular focus.

In just six years of grant-making, the Fund is already demonstrating strong impact and has proven itself to be an efficient and effective mechanism to align global and regional commitments to gender equality with tangible real-world results.

Featured publications
  • Fund for Gender Equality annual report 2017–2018

    Fund for Gender Equality annual report 2017–2018
    Supported by photos, data, info-graphics and individual stories of impact, the FGE 2017-2018 Annual Report highlights key aggregated results achieved by its 26 active projects; presents the main findings and recommendations of the first FGE independent evaluation and introduces its fourth grant-making cycle 2018-2019, a scaling and innovation initiative. More

  • ‘Leaving no one behind’ in action

    ‘Leaving no one behind’ in action
    This brief contains observations from the Fund for Gender Equality’s seven-year experience working with civil society. Gender equality is at the forefront of the 2030 Development Agenda. The Sustainable Development Goals include a stand-alone goal to advance equality, and gender-related targets mainstreamed across the Global Goals. Something has opened a door for drastic progress in the lives of women and girls worldwide, it is the principle of leaving no one behind. More

Planet 50–50 by 2030: Step It Up for Gender Equality