Girls Rising and Global Education Fund
Author: Albiana Jasiqi, supported by NORRAG
Together, Girl Rising and Global Education Fund (GR–GEF) have launched a four-year Venture Philanthropy Fund. Using the principles of traditional venture capital financing for philanthropic grant giving, GR–GEF aim to support social entrepreneurs in leading organizations toward growth and positive change in their communities (Girls Rising, n.d.).
GEF is a foundation with the mission to “improve the lives of children living in poverty around the world through education” by working with “local partners that are leading innovative approaches to increase access, quality, and relevance of education for children living in poverty” (Global Innovation Exchange, 2017). GEF, however, has recently merged with the Girl Rising foundation.
Girl Rising was founded in 2009, first as a film production company that, with the film Girl Rising, raised awareness for girls’ education and empowerment and in 2017 changed into a non-profit organization keeping that initial aim. The foundation aims to draw attention to the fact that to this day, millions of girls worldwide still are “kept out of school, married as children, abused, trafficked, and discriminated against” (Girls Rising, 2020). Thus, Girls Rising wants to make sure that all girls receive access to education. The foundation uses storytelling as a transformative tool and has programs in India, the United States, Northern Nigeria, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Pakistan, Thailand, and Guatemala.
As a joint foundation, GR–GEF have developed programs in India and Kenya. Their aim is to find and invest in leaders intending to promote gender equality and to improve the quality of education for girls and boys living in poverty.