Who We Are:

The Women United Giving Council of Chicago Foundation for women grew out of the unification of the African American, Asian American and Latina Leadership Councils that led grantmaking in their communities from the early 2000s through 2013. Together, we continue to meaningfully invest in women and girls of color. Through individual donations and fundraising efforts, we award grants annually to organizations serving these communities. Our work is an extension of the work of the Foundation.

2019-2020 Leadership
Berenice Carlson
Tasasha Henderson
Adoley Jordan
Jasmine Watkins

Who We Support:

The impact of our work is strong! We have awarded $61,600 to 15 organizations serving women and girls of color in Chicago since 2014.

FY2019 Grantees: $18,000 total awarded
A Long Walk Home (ALWH)
Brave Space Alliance
Global Girls
Gyrls in the H.O.O.D. Foundation (H.O.O.D.)

FY2018 Grantees: $5,600 total awarded
Affinity Community Services
Chicago Community Bond Fund

FY2017 Grantee: $5,000 total awarded
Polished Pebbles

FY2016 Grantees: $8,000 total awarded
BYP 100 - Chicago Chapter
Chicago Volunteer Doulas
Demoiselle 2 Femme

What You Can Do:

We invite you to participate in effective philanthropy: philanthropy that is inspired by a commitment to create positive change for women and girls of color. We invite you to make a difference in collaboration with those who share a connection to your community! Working as women united in a common purpose is empowering for council members and grantees alike. You may join us as a member, attend an event to learn more and/or make a donation to support the investments we’ll make this year.


Member Benefits

  • Amplify your giving by leveraging your dollars with those of other members.
  • Give voice to the issues affecting the women and girls in your community by deciding with your peers on the Council which programs to fund.
  • See the impact of your giving as funded programs share accomplishments with membership that were made possible by the Council’s grants.
  • Develop new personal and professional relationships with other women of color.
  • Learn from trainings, workshops and conversations on philanthropy, women in philanthropy, issues and needs of women, how organizations are serving women, and trends and gaps in funding.

Member Responsibilities

  • Make an annual contribution of $250 with a variety of options to make payments affordable.
  • Participate in group and individual fundraising. This may include soliciting donors, sponsors, and in-kind contributions, serving on an events committee, or recruiting members.
  • Participate in the Giving Council grantmaking process, a cooperative effort to select the recipients of grants. This may include identifying organizations and programs to fund, reviewing proposals, conducting site visits, and voting on grant recommendations.
  • Provide good stewardship and thought partnership to the Council with your active and positive participation. This may include attending meetings, or contributing to discussions about fundraising and grantmaking.
  • Connect Chicago Foundation for Women with organizations and stakeholders doing work on behalf of women and girls of color in the Chicago region.

How It Works

  • Membership is on a fiscal year basis (July 1-June 30), and one may join throughout the year
  • The Giving Council meets monthly
  • Events are scheduled and organized by members
  • Grantmaking occurs in the winter and spring with funding being awarded in June


Why Giving Councils?

Giving Councils link grassroots organizations to funding and the Foundation to new issues, new leaders, and new ideas.

Through its giving councils, Chicago Foundation for Women aims to:

  • Exercise the power of giving individually and collectively to create an understanding of philanthropy within different cultures;
  • Establish unique funds to provide additional support to the communities represented by the Councils (proceeds generated through fundraisings efforts by the Councils go toward these special funds);
  • Educate the public and take action on unique issues facing diverse communities in the Foundation’s areas of interest (economic security, freedom from violence, and access to health services and information);
  • Increase awareness about the Foundation’s work within diverse communities;
  • Provide leadership opportunities, and;
  • Amplify the voice of underrepresented women as philanthropists through democratic philanthropy.

For more information about the Giving Council, contact Eli Marsh at 312.577.2825 or emarsh@cfw.org.