UN Women believes in the ability of business and philanthropy to play an active and central role in transforming our world to achieve gender equality and women’s empowerment, in line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
UN Women is thankful for the support for gender equality and women’s empowerment it has received from its foundation partners, including:
- Ford Foundation
- Zonta International
- Fondation Chanel
- Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
- BHP Billiton Foundation
- Asia Foundation
UN Women’s partnership with the Ford Foundation spans multiple countries and projects while focusing on areas critical to gender equality and women’s empowerment. In the past, the Foundation’s support included advancing evidence-based advocacy in China, and mainstreaming gender-responsive budgeting in India. The partnership has achieved strong results; for example, the work in India resulted in the gender-responsive analysis of agriculture and urban development sectors, which led to evidence generation on gender-responsive budgets, plans and programmes.
The Ford Foundation’s current contributions in Asia and the Pacific include supporting UN Women in strengthening gender-responsive budgeting in India and Sri Lanka and conducting anti-domestic violence work and youth leadership trainings in China.
As a global advocacy leader, Zonta International has pledged its support for the HeForShe campaign and is encouraging men and boys to join Zonta and UN Women in ending violence against women and girls. Zonta’s steady support and funding has also enabled UN Women to develop and implement strategies to prevent violence in urban spaces and make cities safer, create school environments free of gender-based violence, and address the nexus between foreign labour migration and human trafficking in Nepal.
The pilot project for the period 2016-2018, implemented in two select earthquake-affected districts of Nepal, aimed to ensure the economic and personal security of vulnerable women in the post-earthquake context of the country through a comprehensive approach. The specific objectives of the project were to create an enabling environment to address structural barriers and gender-based discrimination, strengthen individual competencies of women migrant workers and survivors of trafficking, and enhance coherence/synergy between institutions and policies.
Since 2018, Fondation Chanel supports UN Women’s activities in Asia and the Pacific. Through three different projects, the foundation contributes to women’s economic empowerment in the region. In Vietnam, Fondation Chanel supports a three-year project to strengthen women’s livelihoods and participation for greater resilience to climate change.
In China, another three-year project is being implemented to strengthen rural Chinese women’s economic resilience to escape poverty and adapt to climate change. The third and last three-year project is set in Nepal and focuses on leveraging women’s leadership and empowerment in value chains and transforming social and economic norms for planet 50:50.
UN Women works together with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation on the global flagship initiative called “Making Every Woman and Girl Count”. The aim of the flagship initiative is to affect a radical shift in the production, availability, accessibility and use of quality data and statistics on key aspects of gender equality and women’s empowerment. In Asia and the Pacific, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation supports UN Women in Nepal with improving the production of gender statistics to monitor progress on the SDGs, informing policy and ensuring accountability.
UN Women’s partnership with the BHP Billiton Foundation centres on the “Second Chance Education and Vocational Learning Programme”. The global three-year programme aims to ensure that marginalized women and young women who are at risk of being left behind have access to, participate in and achieve quality learning, entrepreneurship and employment outcomes through second chance education and vocational training.
The programme leverages partnerships, holistic approaches and innovative technology to break current trends, and provide a comprehensive solution for marginalized young women who have missed out on education and are at risk of being left behind. It creates pathways back either into formal education or to employment or entrepreneurship. In Asia and the Pacific, the BHP Billiton Foundation fully funds the programme’s chapter in India.
UN Women worked with the Asia Foundation and other UN agencies to create country briefs, intended as a resource for policymakers in Member States of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), as well as planners, programme managers, health professionals, service providers, civil society organizations, including key population networks, women’s rights organizations, and others who are advocating for the needs and rights of key affected women and girls.
It is hoped that key affected women and girls in each country will be able to use the country briefs to advocate on their own behalf, as well as in partnership with women’s rights groups, key population networks and human rights advocates for the information and services to which they are entitled under international health and human rights standards.