PORT-OF-SPAIN: Women in Trinidad & Tobago are to benefit from a US$12.5 million grant for 39 non-government organizations from across the world.
United Nations Women Executive Director, Michelle Bachelet, said the funds are being made possible under the Fund for Gender Equality.
She said the grassroots organizations selected are working on programs ranging from training women candidates for upcoming elections in Trinidad & Tobago to the creation of women’s business cooperatives in Ethiopia.
Bachelet said other strategies to advance economic and political empowerment will be supported across Latin America and the Caribbean, Africa, Asia, the Pacific and Europe. Earlier this year, funds were disbursed to grantees in the Arab States Region.
The Fund for Gender Equality is the only global fund exclusively dedicated to women’s economic and political empowerment. It awards multi-year grants starting at US$200,000 directly to women’s organizations and governmental partners that improve the lives of women and girls.
Since its inception in 2009, the Fund has invested a total of US$55.5 million to 94 programs in 71 countries.
But the UN body said that demand remains high and needs remain unmet. It said for this year alone, the Fund received 901 proposals for a total of more than US$481.3 million.
“Women’s political and economic participation is not a luxury; it is a fundamental requirement for a prospering economy and a thriving democracy,” said Bachelet. “The Fund’s grantees work hard and show us what works to make women’s empowerment a reality. We need more funding so that more women can enjoy political and economic opportunities and make greater contributions to their societies.”