A glimpse of WFT’s Her-story:
Women’s Movements Capacity Building
WFT is increasingly earning a reputation for promoting a supportive grant model:
This model combines strategic grants making with sound and innovative capacity building strategies including strong mentor-ship before, during and after grantmaking.
10 years ago, two women (friends,sisters, activists, feminists) sat together and thought of how they could empower local Tanzanian women. 10 years later this is what has happened.
WFT’s founders realized that women‘s voice, visibility and contributions to achieve empowerment and social justice remain unseen and undervalued unless adequate funding reaches them. This has always been their driving force in pushing for and achieving the impossible.
Since 2006/07, we have managed to take off on a 100 % voluntary base without any prior funding in place. Although still with limited means, we now have an organisational base in place with functional governance and implementation structures for delivering on our vision and mission.
This is the result of the combined efforts, hard work and dedication of our board and committee members, well-wishers, partners, grantees, staff, volunteers and the support of women’s rights’ organizations in Tanzania and beyond;
To be able to understand key issues and needs faced by WFT in Tanzania, we have developed a number of key documents and guidelines, such as a Baseline (2008), Feasibility Study (2009), Resource Mobilization Strategy (2012), Strategic Plan 2013-2015 & 2016-2020, Financial Manual (July 2013) and Grants Making Manual (Sept 2013);
We are always developing profiling and marketing tools for resource mobilization and have been able to attract grants, donations, contributions in kind and voluntary support during our initial years. Slowly but surely we are managing to attract more funding from different partners and supporters both locally and internationally;
WFT has developed partnerships with like-minded and women’s rights organizations and networks, women’s funds and academic institutions in Tanzania and beyond.
We became members of the; International Network of Women’s Funds (INWF) - 2011, Association of Women’s Rights in Development (AWID) - 2012 and African Grantmakers Network (AGN) - September 2013;
2011 was our fist operational year. We started our pilot grant making program combined with a strong mentorship program. Thus far, we have been supporting community based women’s rights initiatives working on promoting issues of sex-workers’ rights, women’s disability rights, adolescent girls and sexuality rights, adolescent girls and leadership skills, young women’s rights and decent employment (housemaids’ rights), women’s rights in the new constitution and coalition building.
In 2011, we supported 3 pilots, 6 in 2012 and 26 between January and September 2013;
October 2012 saw WFT organize a strategic National Convening on Women’s Rights in the New Constitution, in which all 19 regions of Tanzania participated. It marked the kick-off of a process to get crucial women’s rights issues anchored in the new constitution and led to the formation of the Wanawake na Katiba Coalition (women and the constitution) representing all regions.
The coalition’s focus is on advocating for women’s rights issues in the constitutional review process and on accomplishing the anchoring of crucial women’s rights issues in the new constitution;
Thursday 5th, September 2013, we officially LAUNCHED THE WOMEN FUND TANZANIA ‘Empowering Local Women Heroes’ (WFT) during the biennial Gender Festival (GF) organized by the Tanzania Gender Networking Program (TGNP).
The launch marked our major intention for 2013/14, i.e. to transition from pilot grant making into becoming a full-fledged and the first women’s rights fund in Tanzania.