Protecting Our Democracy and Women’s Civic Engagement

In December 2016, The New York Women’s Foundation launched a $1 million initiative in response to changes in the national political landscape and the impact of federal-level policy changes on women and other disadvantaged communities. Through this initiative, The Foundation aims to increase its investment in strategies that support immigrant rights, political empowerment and women’s engagement and leadership in an informed and vibrant democratic process. In particular, this strategy focuses on immigrant populations, LGBTQI, and communities of color who are being directly impacted by current federal policy changes.

As part of Resilience NYC, The Foundation launched its Civic Engagement grantmaking strategy in 2017 to support community-based organizations that are increasing women’s leadership in the political process as we as furthering the democratic process so that it works for all New Yorkers. This strategy provides a unique opportunity to enhance women’s participation, leadership, and influence in public life during a tumultuous political era for girls, women and gender-fluid individuals without fear of retaliation, voter fraud, and other forms of suppression. Strategies include:

1. Increasing Women’s Leadership in the Public Sphere to build on the strengths of women to rise, thrive, and strive in the various facets of civic life;

2. Long-term Strategies to Increase Civic Engagement for All including strengthening civic participation and literacy prior to and beyond election day; and;

3. Just Electoral Practices with a focus on enhancing democratic participation in all aspects of civic life through the elimination of barriers that impede full civic participation.