London Funders Statement - Supporting the Women and Girls Sector

We have all been affected by the killing of Sarah Everard, and light a candle for her and all women who have lost their lives to male violence.

We have all been affected by the killing of Sarah Everard, and light a candle for her and all women who have lost their lives to male violence[1].

In the UK: on average, a woman is killed by a man every three days[2]; 97% of women aged 18-24 said they had been sexually harassed[3]; 50 years after the Equal Pay Act was made law the World Economic Forum calculates that it will take 200 more years to close the gender pay gap[4]; and women and girls from minoritised and marginalised groups and communities are disproportionately represented in all these statistics[5] - violence, aggression and injustice that we all have a role in tackling to create a safe, open and fair society.

Women make up the majority of the UK population[6], so the language of equalities does not seem good enough to describe what we need to do.  This is about equity.  It is about justice.  It is about human rights.  Values we collectively placed at the heart of the London Community Response collaboration over the last year, and that we are taking forward at London Funders as we look to build a stronger London together for the future.

We are proud to have worked closely over the last year with our equity and inclusion partners for the London Community Response, including the Women’s Resource Centre[7], who have challenged us to do better as a funding community.  Groups led by and for women have been prioritised through the waves of funding from the London Community Response partnership, recognising the importance of investing in the women’s sector.

We are committed to transparently reporting on the proportion of funding through the London Community Response that is given to groups led by and for women.

We know that when funders act together we can make a difference to the issues we want to tackle.  Our learning from the funder response to the emergencies of 2017 highlighted how an urgent and effective response is important for endemic crises too.  As one funder commented in our report, The Possible Not The Perfect[8]: “I’ve been thinking about domestic violence and all the women who are murdered every year.  We need to respond with the same level of urgency.”

We have commissioned independent learning partners[9] to help us look at how our work together on putting equity at the heart of the London Community Response can shape funder practice for the long term.  We know that this work stands alongside that of other organisations and networks that have been focused on funding equity for many years[10], and so when we share our learning we will also try to co-create spaces for open dialogue about how the experiences of many can shape our next steps.

We are committed to sharing our learning openly with everyone, and to working together to look at how our collective learning can lead to long-term and effective change.

At London Funders our commitment to equity and justice runs through our work.  We will not forget Sarah, or the many women and girls who face violence, oppression and injustice across our city.

We are committed to working together with people, communities and organisations from across sectors to create a London and a society that is safe, open and fair for all.



[1] 188 women were killed in the last year in the UK where a man was convicted or charged as the primary perpetrator (article: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/women-killed-men-jess-philli...)

[3] UN Women UK survey with YouGov, March 2021 (article: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/mar/10/almost-all-young-women-in-...)

[4] World Economic Forum report, December 2018 (referenced at: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/dec/18/global-gender-pay-gap-will...)

[5] See research and publications from Imkaan for examples (resources: https://www.imkaan.org.uk/resources)

[6] 50.6% according to ONS estimates for UK population in 2018 (reference: https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/populationandmigrati...)

[7] Find out more about their work at https://www.wrc.org.uk/

[8] This report was commissioned by London Funders and produced independently by IVAR, and is available at https://londonfunders.org.uk/sites/default/files/images/IVAR022%20Learni...

[9] Thanks to funding from City Bridge Trust/London Community Response Fund, Paul Hamlyn Foundation, the Greater London Authority, United Saint Saviour’s Charity, and the London Community Foundation

[10] See, for example, the excellent work of Rosa (the UK fund for women and girls), at https://rosauk.org/