The first UK-wide fund devoted exclusively to championing and investing in charities working with women and girls will be launched later today at a reception in central London attended by Barbara Follett MP, Deputy Minister for Women and Equality.
Rosa, the new organisation, will tackle key issues – safety, economic justice, health and well being, and equal representation – by giving small grants to enable positive change at the grassroots and strategic level and tackle women’s inequality at its source.
• Promote philanthropy by and for women – galvanise more support for organisations working with women and girls
• Raise funds and invest in change – identify new funding sources and fund initiatives that are tackling old problems in fresh ways
• Act as a champion – promote awareness of women’s organisations and spread understanding of the issues.
Maggie Baxter, Rosa’s development director and one of its three trustees, said: “Despite there being dozens of funds exclusively devoted to women’s issues in the USA, the UK does not have even one similar funding body that champions and supports just women’s causes throughout whole country.”
Rosa launches with £750,000 funding already secured and a further £750,000 in the pipeline. It will begin making grants of between £5,000 and £20,000 in 2009 and will be developing its funding criteria and grant application procedure over the next few months. It will initially be based in an office at the Women’s Resource Centre, London.
There will also be a public fundraising campaign. Developed by creative agencies Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe Y&R and Burnett Works, the online campaign will ask donors to make a gift to the new organisation in the name of an inspirational woman in their lives.
The name Rosa was selected because it is recognisable not just as an English language name but has international recognition as well. Rosa is also the first name of three outstanding historical female activists: Rosa Luxemburg, the German socialist leader; Rosa May Billingshurst, the British suffragette; and Rosa Parks, the African-American civil rights activist.
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