Who We are
Boston Women’s Fund (BWF) was founded in 1984 by progressive women who sought to help vulnerable women and girls face the challenges brought by racial, social and economic injustices. Our goal is to fund grass roots organizations that focus on helping women and girls fight discrimination based on race, class, sexual orientation, age, ability, gender identity and/or gender expression. BWF was the first women’s foundation in Massachusetts and one of the oldest of the over 145 non-profit women’s foundations in the U.S. Our founders recognized that a funding gap existed for women and girls’ organizations seeking foundation grants. We know this funding gap continues today.
Our mission is to provide seed money, program support and ongoing funding for women and girls-led community based organizations in Greater Boston. Through grant making, BWF provides opportunities for women and girls to develop skills and gain confidence in their leadership abilities, while organizing their peers and making their voices heard in public policy debates and educating their communities about root causes and just solutions, which will affect their lives.
In Metro Boston, BWF has made grants exceeding $6.3 million to more than 335 grass roots organizations that have positively impacted the lives of thousands of vulnerable women and girls. In 2015, we temporarily ceased grant making to focus on sustaining the organization and maximizing giving in the most equitable and efficient way possible. Yet, Board and staff truly appreciate the critical need for BWF grants and are committed to re-instating grant making in the fall of 2016.
“Our goal is to strive for a world free or racism, poverty, sexism and other oppressions.”
BWF Core Values
We believe that change starts at the grassroots level, and systemic change is necessary to achieve racial, economic and social justice.
We believe that power and wealth must be redistributed to attain equity and systemic change.
We believe that the fight for women’s rights is an integral part of a larger struggle to end oppression based on race, class, gender, age, religion, ability, or sexual orientation.
We believe that all movements must combat racism by being racially and culturally diverse in both membership and leadership if progressive change is to occur.
We believe that women and girls of color as well as those of extremely low-income must and can be leaders within all movements if progressive change is to occur.
We believe that educating and organizing a diverse donor base is a critical strategy for amassing broad support for social-change movements.
We strive to reflect our commitment to shared leadership, equity, and cultural diversity in all aspects of our organization’s operations.