Chicago Foundation for Women invests over $1 million in organizations that lift up women and girls
CHICAGO (January 12, 2023)— After a tumultuous year for women’s rights, Chicago Foundation for Women (CFW) has announced its support of organizations that are putting women, girls, trans, and gender non-binary people first. At a time when giving targeted to women and girls makes up less than 2% of all philanthropic support, CFW is proud to invest in 66 organizations, totaling over $1.4 million dollars. This funding will help these organizations increase access to health care, build economic progress, fight back against gender-based violence and promote equity across the region.
As CFW president and CEO Felicia Davis Blakley has stated, “CFW invests in organizations that provide equal opportunities and fundamental rights for women, girls, trans, and nonbinary individuals, empowering them to be changemakers in their communities.”
“We put the needs of women and girls first because there is a critical lack of support for those who make up more than half of our population,” said Davis Blakley. “This grant-making cycle focuses on key issues impacting women today, like reproductive justice, pandemic recovery, assisting women in their return to the workforce, and increasing access to affordable housing.”
SHEcoveryTM is the term CFW coined for the critical and unique needs women have post-pandemic as they bore the brunt of job loss, extra childcare responsibilities and costs, and more. CFW continues to prioritize and deepen its investment in organizations that are centering women of color in the recovery efforts and exemplifying the four pillars of SHEcoveryTM: getting women back to work, addressing the eviction crisis, caring for our caregivers and demanding an anti-racist healthcare system.
The nonprofits selected as grant recipients embody grassroots approaches to their work, restorative practices, survivor-centered initiatives, and community organizing. Among the 66 grant recipients are:
Center for Changing Lives (CCL): A multi-service agency offering Financial Opportunity Center (FOC) services, workforce development training, employment coaching, and HUD-approved housing counseling along with advocacy to address the root causes of challenges that primarily affect women of color, specifically regarding finances, employment, and housing. CCL works with people from along the continuum of homelessness to homeownership.
Communities United (CU): An organization that has provided housing resources to over 5,000 households across city neighborhoods. In addition, CU partnered with Law Center for Better Housing to connect families to legal services to take advantage of the temporary City of Chicago policy created to help people with past evictions get their records sealed. In the coming year, CU will continue to work on developing a permanent policy to create legal pathways for people to seal past eviction records.
Caring Across Generations: An organization founded to address the needs of all the people who provide care (for children, for elders, for our care workforce) who are mostly women. Acknowledging that there is no public policy infrastructure to support caregivers, its goal is to build a strong infrastructure for caregiving families across the lifespan and to make sure the caregiving workforce can take care of their families through advocacy for initiatives like paid family leave and other policies that affect vulnerable workers and industries.
Midwest Access Coalition: An organization that provides practical support to “overcoming the barriers created by systemic racism, sexism, and economic inequity to access safe abortion care”. This includes providing support to access transportation, childcare and other logistics during a time of emergency and urgency. They also work in partnership with other reproductive justice organizations advocating for full access to abortion services that is more vital and at risk than ever before.
For the complete list of grants awarded for the Fall 2022 cycle, click here. CFW has invested over $45 million in women and girls since its founding in 1985.
About Chicago Foundation for Women
Chicago Foundation for Women (CFW) invests in women and girls as catalysts, building strong communities for all. CFW funds organizations working to solve the biggest problems facing women and girls: economic insecurity, violence, and lack of access to health care and information. Since its founding, CFW has invested more than $45 million in hundreds of organizations, leveraging the generosity of more than 2,200 donors, impacting over 226,000 women, girls, trans, and gender nonbinary individuals in our region. In addition to grantmaking, CFW invests in developing women leaders and advocates, and brings together diverse coalitions to collaborate, share resources, and develop solutions. Learn more at www.cfw.org.