At the start of our last 2017 Strategic Plan, we were overjoyed to report that women’s rights were progressing in all parts of the world. Somehow, today, this is no longer the reality faced by millions of women and girls. The world is reeling from multiple seismic shocks, causing confusion and a disturbing lurch to the right. Previously distinct factors are compounding each other; from COVID-19 to climate change, the collapse of failed states to increased migration and income inequality. This conglomeration of global crises has expedited the rise of the “strongman” leader in many countries, feeding off and promoting nationalism, xenophobia, and the chronic abuse of human rights.
We know that investing in women’s equality and a more gender equal society has a vital role to play in solving many of the problems the world is facing today, advancing peace, security, prosperity, and controlling climate change and migration. Investments in equality for women, which were already low, are now decreasing at alarming rates as funds are re-prioritized and agendas changed with new, conservative leadership. Decreased funding means that not only do women suffer, communities can’t benefit from the wider outcomes of gender equality, for example, more money in economies, less violence, and less instability.
On our 30th anniversary, we need to double down on the commitment to our vision and scale up to meet the growing assault on justice for women and girls around the world. Reflecting on our progress has shown us the path ahead.
- We know we can create the most impact through globalizing our work, expanding our influence, and connecting our networks as we move into new contexts.
- We must galvanize people around shared goals to attract and mobilize more resources.
- And we will organize ourselves to become ever more effective and united as One Equality Now.
These ideas; Globalize, Galvanize, and Lead underpin our work for the next three years and form the framework for our 2022-24 organizational strategy – Future Proofing Equality.