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Point of View & Reports

Women’s Foundation of Southern Arizona – A Formula for Economic Independence

Results of research by Women’s Foundation of Southern Arizona and the University of Arizona  find that short-term investment in targeted training programs coupled with childcare support for those engaged in these workforce development activities could lead to long-term savings for the state and benefit for both mothers and their children.

Download the Executive Summary InfoGraphic

Download the Research Brief


Women’s Foundation of Mississippi – Women’s Access to Quality Jobs in Mississippi

Research conducted in collaboration with the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, finds that for sustained economic security and stability, work should pay a living wage, provide workers with sufficient hours of work (full-time, full-year employment), and provide access to health insurance, a pension, and the flexibility for working women and men to balance work and family. Too many jobs fail the test. The earnings of women workers, especially Black and Hispanic women, are even lower than the median for all Mississippi workers.

Download the Full Report


Partnership for Women’s Prosperity: Scaling Up for Women’s Economic Security

Partnership for Women’s Prosperity (PWP) is a national initiative of the Women’s Funding Network and six of our leading member foundations to improve the economic security of women, their families and communities. This report details the power of the PWP systems change approach: shared learning, best practices, co-crafting, adapting, piloting new strategies across geographies and strategic investments of money and resources. Since its inception in 2011, more than $11 million was channeled into women’s economic security efforts, directly impacting more than 50,000 women and girls.

Download the Full Report


Women’s Foundations Put Their Money Where The Need Is

Economic security is a core priority for many of our member funds. They also understand that lasting security requires that violence be reduced, leadership increased, and health outcomes improved. Learn more about where member grantmaking dollars went in 2016.

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The Status of Women in Hawai’i 

In a report commission by the Women’s Fund of Hawai’i researchers from the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, (IWPR) found that though there have been important gains in areas like education and health insurance coverage, women still face a widening pay gap and stagnant wages. Nearly four in ten Pacific Islander women are in poverty, compared with only one in ten women in Hawaii overall.

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Pathways to Progress Vol. 2

The current resurgence of Western New York (upstate area encompassing Erie, Niagara, and Chautauqua Counties) has resulted in a new landscape of possibilities for prosperity. The Western New York Women’s Foundation is committed to making sure women can take advantage of these prospects and reap the benefits of the region’s economic growth. Their research shows what is, isn’t, and what can be for women and girls in Western New York. Foundation strategies capitalize on turning opportunities into realities.

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More Than Jobs: Women’s Economic Security Wraparound Strategies











Launched in 2011, the Partnership for Women’s Prosperity (PWP) is a national initiative of six women’s foundations convened by the Women’s Funding Network and working with the initiative’s evaluator, Korwin Consulting, to build the economic power of all women — community by community. Collectively, the foundations have granted $11 million to support more than 80 organizations throughout the country advancing women’s economic security efforts, thanks in part to Walmart Foundation funding.

Drawing from research in the field, first-hand information from grantee partners and the women they support, and deep community-based experience, PWP partners knew from the start that it takes more than job training and post-secondary education for low-income women to progress from lives of economic scarcity to achieving economic goals for themselves and their families. Wraparound support strategies — whether to help women cover financial and other basic needs while attending school, meet their responsibilities as primary caregivers in their families, or gain the knowledge and capacity necessary to reach their goals — was a critical component of each approach the PWP partners invested in.

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Imagine a Year without Equal Pay Day(s)









Cynthia Nimmo, CEO Women’s Funding Network

I get tired talking about Equal Pay Day.  I’m angry that it seems to be accepted that women earn less than their male counterparts. We celebrate Equal Pay Day, Black Women’s Equal Pay Day, and today – Latina Women’s Equal Pay Day – to raise awareness.  That white… non-Hispanic women make 73 cents for every dollar a man makes is old news for most. What may be new for some is that Latina women earn 54 cents for every dollar earned by white, non-Hispanic men. Today, November 2nd, marks the day Latinas would make what white men would earn in 12 months, except it would have taken them 22 months.  Those dollars earned could be paying for necessities, like food, medicine and transportation, invested in retirement or college savings. Instead the wealth gap grows wider, with the work of Latina women undervalued and underpaid.

I won’t bother with more stats; many others will do that today. Instead, I’d like to focus on two actions each of us can take that could render Equal Pay Day(s) unnecessary. Vote and elect more women. While more companies acknowledge the inconvenient truth of pay inequity and conduct their own audits, we need elected officials willing to legislate equal pay. At Women’s Funding Network, we are proud of our member women’s foundations who have played a critical role in educating lawmakers. Like the Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts which helped to pass Senate Bill 2119, establishing pay equity into Massachusetts law. This historic signing celebrated the most comprehensive pay equity law in the United States.

Like the Chicago Foundation for Women and its grantee partner Warehouse Workers for Peace’s advocacy work that resulted in a higher minimum wage in Cook County. And the Women’s Foundation of California’s integral role in strengthening California’s Equal Pay Act, to prohibit employers from paying its employees less than employees of the opposite sex, or of another race, or of another ethnicity for substantially similar work.

Because of successes like these, Women’s Funding Network will continue to share facts and raise awareness. But you – women, men, employees, employers – must do your part. Get involved. Speak up. Vote. Elect women. Looking at it this way, I can imagine a year without Equal Pay Day(s), can’t you?


McKinsey & Company,  –  Women in the Workplace

Women in the Workplace 2017 is a comprehensive study of the state of women in corporate America. This research is part of a long-term partnership between McKinsey & Company and LeanIn.Org to give organizations the information they need to promote women’s leadership and foster gender equality.

222 companies employing more than 12 million people shared their pipeline data and completed a survey of Human Resources practices. In addition, more than 70,000 employees – including women from different races and ethnicities –  completed a survey designed to explore their experiences regarding gender, opportunity, career, and work-life issues.

Download the Report


Women Peace and Security Index (WPS) – Georgetown Institute for Women Peace and Security (GIWPS)

GIWPS developed this index to offer a more comprehensive measurement of women’s wellbeing. Fir the first time ever, GIWPS captured peace and security along with women’s inclusion and justice. In partnership with the Peace Research Institute of Oslo, GIWPS also drew on recognized international data sources to rank 153 countries, covering more than 98 percent of the world’s population. The associated tools and analysis highlight key achievements and deficits from each country.

Read the Index

The Status of Women in the Chicago Region

Chicago Foundation for Women

Creating a Women’s Fund: A Philanthropic Strategy for Women and Girls

Dallas Women’s Foundation with Chambers Family Fund

African Women’s Development Fund 6th CEO Forum Report

The full report on AWDF’s intensive 9-month leadership and governance program for women leaders of women’s rights organizations in Africa.

Women’s Fund in Georgia – 2016 Video Annual Report 

Women’s Fund in Georgia’s animated video of its programs and impact around grant-making, capacity building, feminist philanthropy and other programmatic activities.

Funding Courage: Twenty Years of Innovation, Solidarity and Activism

Urgent Action Fund maps its impact, lifts up the experiences of activists, explores the Sister Fund model as a strategy to shift power in philanthropy, and lays out its vision for the road ahead.

The Heart of Gender Justice in New Mexico: Intersectionality, Economic Security, and Health Equity

This joint project of member NewMexicoWomen.Org and University of New Mexico, includes qualitative findings from community dialogues around gender, health, and economic equity and quantitative findings from an analysis on the link between economic security and women’s health status by race and ethnicity.

“This Is What STEM Looks Like” (2017)

Produced by the Women’s Foundation of Colorado, “This Is What STEM Looks Like” points parents, caregivers and educators to the many opportunities STEM provides for women and girls.

Supporting Inclusive Movements: Funding the Rights of Women with Disabilities (2017)

Produced with support from the Channel Foundation, the brief explores the status of disability funding in the era of the UN Convention on the rights of persons with disabilities and provides a guide for donors to include and address disability from a human rights perspective by supporting organizations representing persons with disabilities.

Towards a Thriving City: A Review of the Impact of the Proposed 2018 D.C. Budget on Girls Women and Families   (2017)

This report, the first of its kind produced by the Washington Area Women’s Foundation provides a detailed analysis of proposed expenditures in relation to the needs of low-income girls, women and families in the City in critical areas such as housing, childcare, social supports, workforce development and violence.

Women’s Funding Network’s Economic Security Benchmarking Report (2016)

Women’s Funding Network’s Economic Security Digital Storytelling Platform – Social Media Toolkit

Child Care for Parents in College: A State-by-State Assessment (2016)

Produced by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research

Economic Security for Survivors For Survivors

Produced by the Victorian Women’s Trust

Perspectives in Philanthropy: The Advancement of Women & Girls (2015)

Produced by Morgan Stanley

The Gender Wage Gap and Public Policy (2016)

Produced by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research

Closing the Women’s Wealth Gap (2016)

Building Effective Women’s Economic Empowerment Strategies (2016)

Produced by the International Center for Research on Women and The Business of a Better World

The Business Case for Women’s Economic Empowerment: An Integrated Approach (2015)

Produced by the Oak Foundation

Partnering with Women’s Funds for Social Investment 

Produced by the Oak Foundation

Women and Wealth: How to Build It 

Written by Heidi I. Hartmann, Institute for Women’s Policy Research

Working Towards Wage & Wealth Equality for Women (2016)

Written by Elena Chávez Quezada, Senior Program Officer, Economic Security, Walter & Elise Haas Fund

Women and Wealth: Insights for Grantmakers (2015)

This report was produced by the Asset Funders Network with development and support provided by the Dallas Women’s Foundation, Chicago Foundation for Women, and the Levi Strauss Foundation.

Status of Women in the States (2015)

The Women’s Funding Network served as the national distribution partner for this massive, interactive data set and analysis tool produced by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research. The report series includes chapters dedicated to women’s employment and earnings, poverty and opportunity, work and family, violence and safety, reproductive rights, health and well-being,and political participation. Also included were state-by-state fact sheets on each of the 50 U.S. states as well as Washington, D.C.

Twelve Women’s Funds in the South: Common Context, Collective Impact (2011)

Learn how 12 women’s funds are addressing critical issues affecting women in the southern United States. In a part of the country too often characterized by its problems, these organizations see enormous potential for women and girls to be the solution.

Accelerating Change for Women and Girls: The Role of Women’s Funds (2009)

To understand the increased inclusion of women within philanthropy, the Foundation Center partnered with the Women’s Funding Network to chart the current landscape of philanthropy focused on women and girls and document the role of women’s funds and foundations. Download the executive summary or the full report, or order a hard copy from the Foundation Center.