HER Fund, Hong Kong
In Hong Kong, the HER Fund was established by a group of women’s activists in 2004, with a view to advancing the rights and supporting the work of women on the margins of society. Through its grantmaking and other kinds of support the Fund established itself as a trusted partner for local women’s groups. However, as Executive Director, Judy Kan, observed: “At a certain point we noticed that we were overly dependent on grants from international funders…We had reached a juncture in our organizational development where we needed to develop a more focused strategy for steady, sustainable growth…We decided that the best way to proceed was to build our local donor base…for us, this is about more than money, it’s also about building up a network of local supporters.”
In 2018, the GFCF supported Hong Kong’s HER Fund in their efforts to build a robust local resource mobilization strategy. This has been pivotal in the organization’s development, which now receives 40% of its funding from Hong Kong-based donors – funding that can be channeled back into programmes for marginalized women and girls. Judy is now enthused about encouraging others to adopt a community philanthropy approach, and readily shares how important this has been for the Fund: “Our advice would be: just get out there! You don’t get very far sitting in your office, behind a computer. Over the past year in particular, we have taken the time to get to know many different people in our community, to ask them for advice and insights, and to share our work.”
The GFCF provided a grant of U.S. $20,000 in grant funding to HER Fund to develop a local donor development programme (in 2018 & 2019).