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Women's organisations and feminist mobilisation: supporting the foundational drivers of gender equality

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Women's organisations and feminist mobilisation: supporting the foundational drivers of gender equality

21st September 2022

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Women have come together to bring about seismic shifts in the daily lives of people around the globe. Without the tireless work of women demanding their rights – and without activists standing up and organising against multiple forms of oppression (often at great personal cost), it is easy to imagine a very different, less equal, world.

Women’s autonomous mobilisation dates back millennia and crosses all geographies and continents. Although frequently written out of historical narratives, women have led and collectively contributed to all sorts of organising-around various forms of social justice, not least gender inequality.

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Despite the critical roles women’s movements play in progressing issues at the core of the sustainable development goals and global funders’ agendas, these groups are chronically undersupported. Worldwide, grassroots women’s organisations receive a very small share of the total funding directed to gender equality – reportedly less than 1% of Official Development Assistance.

This ODI briefing note discusses the many ways in which women’s movements contribute to social transformation, outlining the barriers and challenges they face, as well as the support needed to sustain long-term impact.

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Report by the Overseas Development Institute

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