Antigua, region must have a fund to support women’s and LGBTQI+ rights

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Despite a thriving presence and rich history of feminist activism and social change, the Caribbean has long been one of the only regions in the world without a dedicated philanthropic fund focused on women’s and LGBTQI+ rights.

A new study finds resounding support to change that, pointing to the power and promise of women’s and LGBTQI+ movements working across the region, and the opportunity for donors to support their work with sustained and flexible funding.

If not now, when? A Feasibility Study for a Caribbean Fund for Women’s and LGBTQI+ Rights draws on engagement with activists, civil society leaders, and philanthropic donors— including a survey, three stakeholder sessions, and a public forum—as well as a review of literature and reports about women’s rights and LGBTQI+ movements in the Caribbean, donor and philanthropic attitudes, and trends. Its examination includes potential sources of funding; structure, management, and governance; mandate and location; financial requirements; and a risk analysis.

“Over the past several decades, Caribbean feminist movements have been significantly underfunded. Many of the leading organizations working towards gender justice are operating on shoestring budgets with volunteers and unpaid staff. We are all united in the belief that our region deserves much better, “ said Amina Doherty. “The time is now for a Caribbean fund that resources the activism that is addressing the most pressing issues of our time, from climate change and gender-based violence to economic security.”

The study is based on the premise that “the lack of a fund in the Caribbean is not solely due to its feasibility, but is also related to the negotiation of power and what, whom, and what places are prioritized in philanthropic spaces.” The fact that the Caribbean is one of the only regions in the world without such a fund, the study notes, “has direct correlation to how little funding goes to movements in the region.” It finds that “funding in the region is still relatively small compared to similarly sized regions in the world”— while the funding that does exist is often “insecure, short term, and project-based”, with a patchwork of “funding agendas…set by external actors.”

A Caribbean-led fund could go a long way in addressing these challenges, improving both the quantity and quality of funding for movement leaders. Establishing a regional fund could play a critical role in supporting the sustainability and growth of women’s rights and LGBTQI+ organizations at grassroots, local, and national levels, while also putting in place strategies to optimize resource mobilization, grantmaking, and capacity-building as conduits for supporting activism, the study finds.

“A Caribbean-led fund would unleash a ripple effect of change on two levels. It’s an exciting opportunity to increase resources for the region through direct grantmaking. And it would serve as a powerful base for philanthropic advocacy to leverage far greater resources from across the entire field for many years to come,“ said Tamara Huggins.

Along with opportunities, the study notes challenges that should be addressed and researched more deeply, such as the logistics of operating a fund across such a culturally and linguistically diverse region with varied colonial legacies. Yet as the experience of other funds in regions with similar challenges clearly demonstrates, the challenges are surmountable.

Women’s and feminist funds have long played a crticial role in supporting locally-led activism across the globe. According to Gendernet: “Supporting women’s funds is one of the most effective ways for donors to get resources to southern women’s rights organisations and movements […]. They are uniquely well-connected with women’s rights organisations at the grassroots level and can reach small and emerging groups that are less able to access larger sources of funding.” A feminist fund in the Caribbean could stabilize support for local changemakers, helping to unleash their full potential to drive lasting change in the region.

The study was initiated by Women’s Voice and Leadership – Caribbean, a partnership of the Equality Fund and the Astraea Foundation for Justice to to resource women’s rights and LGBTQI+ organizations in the Caribbean region. A five-year (2019-2024), $4.8 million CAD initiative, WVL-Caribbean is demonstrating what becomes possible when movement leaders have sustained support to lead change on their own terms, according to their own agendas for the region. The initiative is funded by the Government of Canada.

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19 COMMENTS

  1. Activists looking for a payday… Couldn’t read all of that goobldygook but obviously we don’t have such funds because we don’t need them and they would be a collosal waste of precious resources needed for more pressing matters pertainant to our daily survival. We should set up funds to support young entrepreneurs’ startup businesses, also to support young men in developing good character and leadership behaviour, also to promote conflict resolution and good relationships between men and women. It’s a dual income world and our people will continue to live in poverty if our men and women cannot sustain strong peaceful families. Women already have rights. We need both men and women involved in these conversations and plans. The alphabet people… not sure why they are always attaching themselves to other peoples’ issues – women’s issues, black people’s issues etc. Is there a specific need that is unique to them that requires funding?

    • Women have issues because women are biologically different than men. So, bearing and rearing children and being physically weaker affects many aspects of life – employment, conflicts etc. Black people have issues because of the after effects of slavery – again mostly employment issues, behavioural and community problems etc. What are the pressing LGBT issues that need funding? People saying mean things? Perhaps if they would stop pushing themselves front and center every minute no one would even notice them enough to hurt their feelings. People in these parts have more important things to worry about.

  2. 😳Have a fund to support women rubbing their clits together and men sticking their penises in one another butt holes?? These types of people are not contributing anything to the world but nastiness 🔥 fire for that 🔥

    😒we need a fund to straighten them out!!

  3. LBGTQRSTUV: Do they have the same rights as all others? My answer,yes they do.Do women have rights as men? My answer,yes they do.Women can do most things as men do.I am living in a world where women do unbelievable works. They are not members of LBGTQRSTUV. They do not look for HANDOUTS FROM ANYONE.

  4. This is the agenda that they are pushing not homelessness or lack of work or Healthcare it’s all part of a plan to destroy the nuclear family

  5. Women & Youth needs have nothing to with the ‘alphabet people’ – it would defeat the entire purpose because heterosexual women and youth would be absent!
    Maybe that is the plan, they get to spend the entire fund!

  6. “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.” 2 Corinthians 5:10

  7. The first thing they do is paint themselves as victims of “gender dysphoria”. The next step is they organize and become vocal, demanding to be recognized. Later they get into positions of power as has become the case in america, then all hell breaks loose, address them by the wrong pronoun and you’ll be arrested in some american cities, otherwise you may very well be attacked physically.

    Read my link above fro American Thinker if you want to see how bad it’s become in america then ask yourself, is this what we want to live with?

  8. This son of Mami_Wata and Papa_Elegba CHRISTened #Jumbee_Picknee(Spirit_Child) at life’s #crossroads ✝️🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿⚔️❌☦️🎿✝️☠️🏴‍☠️🤞🏾🙅🏾‍♂️of SWASTIKA & SQUARE says…

    The LGQRSTBAQ aka the alphabet gang is the most powerful POLITICAL & RELIGIOUS Organization of the HUEman World today, and ain’t a damn thing can be done to STOP 🛑 their movements outside of a physical war against them. And, this will never happen.

    #STRAIGHT
    #TALK

    • @Ras – I have to disagree on this issue with you. The reason that the “alphabet” movement has completely taken over in the u.s. is the american people. A vast majority of americans are weak, bleating and dull-witted sheep who will do anything to avoid conflict, to avoid the horror of being called “homophobe”, to accept the redefinition of right and wrong so as not to be deemed as “judgmental”, and as a result, a once great nation has become Sodom and Gommorah.

      • @Scott…If, they couldn’t be stop, since, the days of the FLAVIANS/CAESARS with their indoctrination’s through such things, as the Nicene Creed/Apostle Creed, what makes us think, that they can be stopped now.
        Catholicism and the Church of England have not paid victims of their homosexual crimes billions of dollars in settlements by mistake.

        Don’t forget, “all roads lead to Rome,” from control of the Social Media platforms to control of wars.

        Ain’t no stopping them, outside of a physical war, and this will never happen.

        RASpect…

        • @Ras- I think that the people just have to have the will to take a stand against this perversion, and it seems like the people of A&B have the will and moral wherewithal to do so.

          “All rods lead to Rome” true that, sadly, but true that.

          The “alphabet” movement doesn’t exist in muslim countries, their means of control are inhumane but “alphabet” doesn’t exist there.

          • @Scott…

            A…when it comes to Sharia Law many people will die before they submit to this type of lifestyle.

            B…simply because homosexuality is not in the ‘open’ in Muslim Country’s does not necessarily mean, they don’t exist in said Country’s.

  9. ONE THOUGHT or TWO
    We need a special STEM and business curriculum Education Fund now (yesterday!) for the OECS.
    Our education system MUST PRIORITIZE STEM, the acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, and business curriculum in EVERY PUBLIC SCHOOL and INSTITUTION, including The University of the West Indies Five Island, with up-to-date facilities, qualified STEM teachers and administrative staff, powered by our OECS and Caricom creative Arts (consciousness).
    Our economic growth and social development in this 21st century REQUIRE that transformation from the colonial education for elite management and unskilled labor.

    Respect!

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