COFEM Handbook on Feminist Grantmaking

Applying a Feminist Lens to Grantmaking for Addressing Violence Against Women and Girls: Funding For Transformative Change


This Handbook aims to support donors to integrate a feminist lens into grantmaking, particularly in how to fund work to prevent and respond to violence against women and girls (VAWG) in humanitarian and development settings. It seeks to advance strategies for ethical and effective funding that supports transformative and sustained social change.

The Handbook begins with an overview of the key features and goals of feminist grantmaking to prevent and respond to VAWG and discusses the benefits of applying a feminist frame when supporting these efforts. It then dives into six commitments for donors to uphold when integrating a feminist lens into VAWG grantmaking, and provides a checklist to help donors operationalize each commitment in their day-to-day work.

This guidance can serve as a reference point for any staff working at a donor organization   ̶  including foundations, funds, bilateral and multilateral donors.  It can also be a useful resource for women’s organizations, human rights activists, and anyone else interested in learning more about applying a feminist approach to VAWG grantmaking. Although the Handbook has an explicit focus on preventing and responding to VAWG, the principles and commitments included can be applied to a variety of funding for humanitarian response and development progress that seeks to support the rights, dignity and empowerment of oppressed and underserved groups.