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New fund for women opened in Ireland

New fund for women opened in Ireland

The Social Innovation Fund (SIF) in Ireland has launched a €1.8 million fund to support charities and social enterprises that seek to enhance the economic mobility of women.

The Mná na hÉireann, Women of Ireland Fund, is a partnership over three years between SIF, the Bank of America and the Department of Rural and Community Development. The Department of Rural and Community Development provides match funding for all philanthropic funds raised by SIF via the Dormant Accounts Fund.

The Fund is designed specifically to equip organisations to expand their business acumen, drive growth and deepen their impact across Ireland. In particular it will empower women to progress their education or progress into new or more sustainable employment.

The specific targets for the Fund over three years are to empower 1,000 women to find and secure sustained employment across Ireland by investing in organisations that provide training, upskilling, education and other services directly to women experiencing disadvantage and to double the impact of successful applicants by providing growth capital and support to organisations with a proven track record of social impact.

Grants will be between €50,000 – €100,000 per year for three years as well as a bespoke business supports package designed to equip not for profit organisations to expand their business acumen, drive growth and deepen their impact.

The core criteria for the Women’s Fund are:

  • Projects that focus on women who are experiencing disadvantage (socio-economic, educational disadvantage, disability, members of minority group and other)
  • Projects that focus on developing economic mobility for women in Ireland experiencing disadvantage through
  • Increasing access to job opportunities
  • Increasing female labour force participation
  • Assisting women to progress their current positions
  • Workforce development – building employment-related skills that lead to employment (includes soft skills)
  • Projects that have evidence of sustained impact
  • Organisations or projects with strong financial and governance structures, with the ability and resources to handle multi-year funding
  • Organisations or projects with a viable fundraising model that can maximise and leverage grant funding
  • Organisations or projects that have demonstrated strong leadership

The Fund is open for applications until 18th April 2019, with application details on the Social Innovation Fund website.



Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world's first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp and co-founder of Research massive growth in giving.

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