With the support of our partners (the Equality Fund – EF, the Association for Women’s Rights in Development – AWID, and the Congolese Women’s Fund – CWF), we wrote an open letter to the President of the French Republic, Emmanuel Macron regarding the 120 million euro “Support Fund for Feminist Organizations (FSOF)”. We collected 194 signatures as of the December 8 filing date, that number now stands at 200 signatures.
Here is an extract from the Open Letter
Dear Mr. President of the Republic,
We, the undersigned, feminist and women’s rights organizations and young women,
…Welcome your initiative to release a “Support Fund for Feminist Organizations (SFWO)” of 120 million euros over three years to support feminist movements working for equality between women and men;
…Applaud the launch of AFD’s 15 million euro call for projects to support women’s organizations in the South, which is the first disbursement of the SFWO;
…Concerned, however, by the numerous conditions related to the management of the first 15 million euro grant that considerably limit the number and type of organizations that can qualify to manage these funds;
The financial criterion that the project organization or consortium leader “must have an average annual budget equal to or greater than 5 million euros” eliminates almost all women’s and young women’s organizations working in developing countries, including most Women’s Funds;
…Let us stress that the risk that feminist organizations are excluded from access to quality grants in this first round of funding is real…
…Emphasize that it is crucial that France’s commitment to invest 120 million euros in feminist initiatives over the next three years, meet its stated objectives and actually reach feminist and women’s rights organizations in the Global South..;
…Affirm that what feminist and women’s rights organizations want and need are quality, multi-year, flexible financial resources for their initiatives and MANAGED by themselves,
…Let’s hope that the French government, by accepting our demands, will prove its understanding of the real needs of feminist and women’s rights organizations and young women. As Co-Chair of the Equality Generation Forum, France has the opportunity, in its next funding round, to set an example of good practice in feminist funding.
You can read the full letter by clicking on the following link: https://xoese.org/lettre-ouverte-au-president-macron/
This new XOESE campaign aims to:
- To help women in the movement understand where the money they receive in the form of grants for their initiatives comes from;
- Re-examine their relation with the received grant
- Think about how to make the best use of it
Activities to be launched soon will include:
- exchanges between actresses of the movement
- exchanges between donors and actresses of the movement
- question and answer sessions
- brainstorming and strategy sessions on innovative solutions
Sessions will include:
Part 1: Grant Money and Us (Activists)
- Grant money = A donation? But to what extent?
- How to use the funds made available to organizations?
- Spending without counting or Spending without wasting grant money, the fruit of someone’s labor somewhere
- How can we be thrifty without being stingy? To take care of the grant money as if it were our own without confusing it with our own
Part 2: Our relationship with our donors
- Respect the terms of the contract, while maximizing the use of resources with the agreement of donors who are often very open and willing to listen to our proposals.
- Our donor: a partner or a boss?
Part 3: Beyond Grants: How to sustain a stable income for our organizations and their leaders
The Alliance for Feminist Movements
Officially announced at the Generation Equality Forum, the Alliance for Feminist Movements is a multi-stakeholder initiative focused on exponentially strengthening, sustaining and improving financial and political support for women’s rights and feminist organizations and movements. As a multi-stakeholder platform, it aims to become the place where collective actions and efforts will have a greater impact than the sum of its members’ individual actions and efforts. It intends to mobilize more and better funding for feminist organizations and movements, without becoming a funding mechanism. It is a platform for ongoing and meaningful dialogue and mutual learning, where funders of all kinds and feminist civil society will come together around common priorities.
The membership is composed of 5 constituencies: feminist civil society, private philanthropy, national governments, women’s funds and other allies.
XOESE has elected to serve on the Alliance Steering Group to bring the voice of Francophones to its leadership.