Government of Canada to Invest $100 Million to Support Women Impacted by the Pandemic

Ontario: The COVID-19 pandemic has magnified systemic and longstanding inequalities, with women and girls disproportionately affected by the crisis. The Government of Canada is taking strong action to prevent the pandemic from rolling back progress or reversing the hard-won gains of women in Canada.

Today, the Honourable Maryam Monsef, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Rural Economic Development, launched a new call for proposals through Women and Gender Equality Canada’s Women’s Program. The call, entitled “Feminist Response and Recovery Fund”, will provide $100 million for projects helping those in greatest need. The funding will allow recipient organizations to launch new projects or scale up past projects that increase women and girls’ participation in Canada’s economic, social, democratic and political life.

Eligible projects will tackle barriers, address harmful gender norms and attitudes, or improve policies, practices, resource distribution, networks and relationships. Recognizing the need for a feminist, intersectional response to COVID-19, Women and Gender Equality Canada will direct funding to projects supporting marginalized or underrepresented people, including Indigenous women, Black women, women of colour, women who are members of LGBTQ2 communities, and women living with disabilities or in rural or remote communities.

The call for proposals aims to provide flexibility, allowing organizations to respond to a wide range of issues in order to accelerate progress on gender equality and ensure that Canada’s response to and recovery from COVID-19 is inclusive of diverse women. These projects will serve as building blocks for long-term, lasting change to advance women’s equality.

The women’s program provides funding to eligible organizations in three priority areas:

Ending violence against women and girls
Improving women’s and girls’ economic security and prosperity
Encouraging women and girls in leadership and decision-making roles
Today’s announcement builds on previous steps taken to ensure an intersectional response to the pandemic, including commitments in the 2020 Speech from the Throne to create an Action Plan for Women in the Economy and move forward on a Canada-wide early learning and childcare system.

Recognizing that COVID-19 has increased the rates and severity of gender-based violence (GBV), the Government of Canada has provided $100 million directly to organizations that support survivors and their families. Combined with new flexibilities to existing programs, this funding has supported over 1500 organizations, helping them keep their doors open at this challenging time.

The call for proposals is open until March 25, 2021 at 12:00 p.m. (Noon) Pacific Standard Time). Visit for more information and for details on how to apply.