VGIF provides grants globally to fund locally generated projects
that advance the rights of women and girls.
NEWS AND UPDATES
Attention all prospective grantees: VGIF’s funding cycle for grants to be awarded in April 2017 is open. Letters of Intent (LOIs) will be accepted through late July. You can learn about VGIF grants, our funding criteria, and submit a LOI here: http://vgif.org/apply/.
Denis is one of two males working with the Albanian Society of Development. Through their 2015 VGIF grant, the group raised awareness of breast cancer and the importance of early screenings through educational seminaries are workplaces in eight cities in Albania. Denis admits that he felt out of place at first because not many men are involved in women’s health activities. But by the end of the project, he says, “The video that I edited and the leaflets that we created have reached women all around the country and if only one of them goes to the doctor early and gets cured on time I think our mission is accomplished. Can you believe it, I am not a doctor, I am computer person but I can say I helped saving someone’s life and it feels great!”
39 years old
Hoima District, Uganda
Hoima Blind Women Association, Chairperson
“My life has been transformed as a result of founding the Hoima Blind Women Association,” says Joy.
After losing her eyesight in 2005, Joy says, “I would spend most of the day in bed, crying and blaming God for vision loss, unaware that this was opening another responsibility of championing the blind women cause in the region. With help from a Community Leader, Joy was eventually inspired to use her life-changing situation to mobilize other blind women in the area. Hoima Blind Women Association has implemented projects like poultry production, hygiene and sanitation, vegetable growing, and blind women’s rights. Joy says, I so much believe that working as a Chairperson of Hoima Blind Women Association is a noble calling to lobby for the plight of visually impaired women in Hoima District.”
Joy works with local women and girls due to traditional male domination and suppression of the women and girls. Women and girls remain at the margin of the development process so their concerns receive minimal attention, their needs are not incorporated into planning, and their voices are lacking from lobbying and advocacy efforts. She explains, “The Hoima Blind Women Association therefore was started to close this existing gap to enable women and girls have a platform to say their concerns without fear or favor.
Of the VGIF grant, Joy says, “the project has brought about solidarity and cohesion amongst the visually impaired women and girls.” Project planning is collaborative so the “women and girls now work as a team.” Working with the local leaders has been a good thing because the leaders are now willing to support the project in terms of monitoring and lobbying for more support. Joy credits the project with making her a better leader and has made her feel informed enough to articulate issues. Joy says, “The participants are interested in the project and committed to ensure that the set project milestones are achieved. The project will also for many more years after [VGIF funding ends] owing to the active participation of the members.”