Thank You For Igniting Change 

Picture of Mirenda Meghelli, WFN's Director of Policy and Programs, with text that says "From the Desk of Mirenda Meghelli"

Dear Colleagues,

First and foremost, thank you. Thank you for sharing your story with us. It’s because of you and your response to our 2022 WFN member survey, that we now have the most comprehensive snapshot of how, what, and who makes your organizations so special.

And we are happy to share it with you today.

The results in the 2022 Landscape Report on Gender Equity Grantmakers inspired us and emboldened us. The trends and shifts we’re seeing within the WFN alliance is unlike any other in philanthropy. You’re more bold, more diverse, more impactful than organizations triple your size.  

Key findings from this Landscape Report include:

  • 89% of our network has an intentional racial justice focus within the organization’s grantmaking or programming
  • Women of color leaders within our network increased by 10% since 2020
  • 51% of our network’s U.S., place-based, women’s funds are led by women of color, 73% of whom identify as Black women
  • Women of color executive leaders have the largest operating and grantmaking budgets amongst our network’s U.S. place-based women’s funds.

While we know funding for your work remains stagnant, your action and vision for what’s possible has soared. But you’re paying a precious price to make up the difference.

While our member funds highlighted positive strides, many of you shared that you’re road weary. Burned out. Some of the greatest sources of your burnout as executive leaders are a lack of adequate staffing and racial bias. And when we asked member executive leaders to share three words that described their overall wellbeing, we heard words like “exhausted, stressed, and overwhelmed.” However, alongside those words, they also reported feeling “optimistic, grateful, and purposeful.”

WFN is about connection and community. Each of us, together, brings leadership and knowledge from our work locally, to the global alliance of gender justice grant makers and sector partners. I too feel grateful, optimistic, and purposeful. The WFN team remains deeply committed to supporting your incredible work and broadening this research initiative to better highlight our global partners. As we approach the new year we look forward to flanking you to ignite change in philanthropy, so that your efforts can ignite change in the world.

Yours in Partnership,

Mirenda Meghelli
Women’s Funding Network 
Senior Manager of Policy and Programs

Knowledge and Research Principles and Practice