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New grants from Fawcett Society to challenge gender stereotypes

Howard Lake | 22 November 2016 | News

Gender equality and women’s rights charity The Fawcett Society is offering a new grants programme to support women and men to challenge and overturn damaging gender norms and stereotypes which limit people’s ability to live as they choose.
The Spirit of Women Changemakers small grants programme is supported by the Spirit of 2012 charity. It  created the Changemakers programme to celebrate the centenary in 2018 of the year in which when women in the UK first won the right to vote.
The grants programme is receiving administrative and technical support from business services company BE Group.

What Spirit of Women Changemakers will fund

At the heart of the programme is the drive to change perceptions of disability and build social cohesion.
Changemakers will offer grants of between £5,000 and £15,000 to organisations for new projects which offer creative, cultural, sporting or volunteering responses to the following challenges:
• Improving women’s body confidence and challenging objectification in all areas of life, including in personal relationships
• Challenging traditional gendered caring roles and the undervaluing of care
In addition, in order to meet the wider goals of The Fawcett Society and Spirit of 2012, to be eligible projects must meet all of the following requirements:
• Demonstrate that the activity will contribute to social cohesion, bringing diverse groups together to engage in their communities
• Challenge perceptions of disability. This can be through the project activity itself or through ensuring inclusion of disabled people in the project activity
• Improve the wellbeing of participants and volunteers involved in the project
• Have a celebratory aspect in the run up to the 2018 centenary of women getting the vote.
The funded activity must be completed by March 2018.

Who can apply?

Applications to the Spirit of Women Changemakers are open to charities, Community Interest Companies and social enterprises. They can be made by partnerships or coalitions but there must be a lead accountable organisation able to meet all the eligibility criteria.
The deadline for expressions of interest is 22nd December 2016, and successful applicants will be informed by March 2017.
Sam Smethers, Fawcett Society Chief Executive said:


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“Harmful gender norms and stereotypes about the roles of women are stubbornly powerful, and have a serious impact on the wellbeing and life chances of women and men. This is a fantastic opportunity to encourage community engagement and to celebrate the power of women and men to drive forward change in their communities, their workplaces or in their own lives as well as to identify projects that make a lasting difference”.

Debbie Lye, Chief Executive of Spirit of 2012, added:

“In the lead up to the 2018 centenary of votes for women, we have a high profile moment to come together and consider the best ways in which to celebrate and promote gender equality and raise women’s voices in the UK. Spirit is collaborating with Fawcett and BE Group to attract and support some bright ideas about how to do that.”