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Gender Action 2012 Annual Fundraising Letter
Gender Action is 10 years old in 2012! Please join me in celebrating this landmark anniversary by reflecting on our achievements for poor women, girls, men and boys around the world. Let me share a few select examples:
Gender Action Achievements
First, we achieved a major victory after Gender Action's ten years of persistent advocacy convinced the World Bank, the largest taxpayer-funded international development assistance agency, to embrace women's human rights as a core development objective for the first time. Previously, the World Bank promoted women's empowerment solely as an instrument to attain economic development. On its own, this "instrumentalist" approach failed to advance women's and men's equal human rights. This year, Gender Action advocacy finally paid off when the World Bank's annual 2012 flagship World Development Report, the first addressing Gender Equality, upheld women's and men's equal rights as a central objective.
Second, after tireless Gender Action work to encourage the World Bank to direct funding to combat gender-based violence (GBV), the World Bank approved its first grant to explicitly address GBV in Haiti. Intolerably, the vast majority of women worldwide are sexually assaulted. Following the 2010 Haitian earthquake, Gender Action demonstrated that none of the World Bank's massive Haiti investments tackled epidemic rapes unspeakably violating women, young girls, and even babies living on streets and in camps. In response to Gender Action pressure, the World Bank approved its first grant to explicitly address GBV in Haiti. Gender Action data demonstrates that the World Bank has made only three dedicated anti-GBV grants throughout the world in its entire history, energizing our commitment to press for increased funding for the fight against GBV.
Gender Action is also proud to celebrate our status as the "go-to" organization for research, analysis and global capacity building on gender issues resulting from International Financial Institution (IFI) investments. Since founding, Gender Action's collaborations with many organizations in both developed and developing countries have merited this special recognition. Not a day passes by without a civil society group, government or IFI official, journalist, think tank analyst, academic, or student seeking to improve gender justice and women's rights requesting Gender Action assistance, ideas, and advice. This year requests flooded in from southern partners such as groundWork/South Africa, The Martin Luther Foundation (LUKMEF)/Cameroon, and PotoFamn/Haiti; as well as northern and global organizations such as the Association for Women's Rights in Development (AWID), the Caring Economy Campaign (CEC), the Heinrich Boell Foundation (HBF), and the Global Gender Climate Alliance (GGCA). Media outlets such as Al Jazeera, Financial Times' This is Africa, Huffington Post, National Public Radio, and The Real News Network broadcast and published Gender Action interviews, stories, research and analysis.
Mobilizing Gender Advocates
Because of power in numbers, this year we are marking our decennial with a major new partnership initiative: a Global Gender IFI Watcher Network! Women in developing countries have a right to participate in and benefit from IFI investments, but they lack the resources and support to do so. While Gender Action has worked individually with partners across Latin America, Central Asia, and Africa over the last decade, we launched this Network in 2012 to promote collaborative gender advocacy around IFI investments. So far, 236 CSOs from 82 countries-the vast majority based in the developing world have joined the new Network.
We Need Your Help
Seeing Gender Action's global impacts on women and girls, people repeatedly remark that we must have 50-100 staff, but Gender Action's actual team consists of only four committed, resourceful, dynamic change-leaders. It is hard to beat Gender Action for a high social return on your donation. Through Gender Action, you can help direct taxpayer development funds to combat gender-based violence, food insecurity, conflict and other priorities described in our enclosed brochure and at www.genderaction.org. Together, we can continue the work to achieve gender justice and promote women's rights in all IFI investments.
Thanks for your support and Happy Holidays!