9 Best Charities for International Women’s Day (Complete 2022 List)

9 Best Charities for International Women’s Day (Complete 2022 List)

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Olivia Lopez

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Every year on the 8th of March, thousands of people from around the world celebrate International Women’s Day. It’s a day to recognize women’s achievements, amplify the voices of all women, and uplift women from various backgrounds. But with so many campaigns, fundraisers, and charities celebrating this day annually, we had to ask: What are the best charities for International Women’s Day?

The best charities for International Women’s Day are CARE International, Girls Not Brides, and Equality Now. These charities initiate annual campaigns to celebrate all women and fundraise for projects that empower women. They also raise awareness on women’s issues and promote gender-inclusivity.

Whether you want to join a local International Women’s Day celebration, fundraise for a relevant cause, or advocate for women’s rights, there is a charity for you. Keep reading to learn more about what the best charities for International Women’s Day are all about, how they work, and what your best way would be to make a contribution.

Related: Did you know that you can make Amazon donate 0.5% of your purchases to a charitable organization of your choice. Sign up at smile.amazon.com, select the charity you want your donations to go to, and make Amazon donate a part of your purchases to your chosen charity at no extra cost to you.

Here’s What All the Best Charities for International Women’s Day Have in Common

The charities on this list were chosen based on their impact for empowering women on International Women’s Day. They advocate for women’s rights and increase awareness on issues that affect women through their International Women’s Day campaigns.

They are dedicated to women’s rights and their continued work on gender equality reflects this mission. They operate all over the world, from North America to Africa. And they all share the same goal of celebrating women on International Women’s Day.

These Are the 9 Best Charities for International Women’s Day

Below are our favorite charities for International Women’s Day (you can click on their link to directly jump to their section in this article):

  • CARE International
  • Girls Not Brides
  • Equality Now
  • Dress for Success
  • Women for Women International
  • Womankind Worldwide
  • ActionAid International
  • Global Fund for Women
  • Catalyst

(At the end of this article we’ll also share our six-step approach on how you can select the best charity to support.)

CARE International: Combatting All Forms of Discrimination Against Women

CARE International was founded in 1946 as the Cooperative for American Remittances to Europe, to provide aid packages to people during World War II. They continued to expand their work across continents, offering emergency aid to people affected by disasters or conflict. Today, they work to promote gender equality and women’s rights through their advocacy. They also celebrate International Women’s Day with a range of campaigns to promote awareness on related issues.

Their impact and transparency ratings: CARE International holds an impressive 4-star rating and an Accountability and Transparency score of 97 out of 100, both from Charity Navigator. They have a Financial score of 90 out of 100, also from Charity Navigator. 

To address – and change – the attitudes that make gender-based violence possible.

CARE International

What they do: CARE International provides educational, social, and economic empowerment programs to communities to reduce violence, especially gender-based violence. They deliver emergency relief to vulnerable people, such as women and children, and those living in rural areas. They also advocate for policies that incorporate the needs of society’s most marginalized groups.

What they’ve achieved: CARE International has worked worldwide in more than 100 countries to reduce conflict and gender-based violence. For example, in 2015, they reached more than 800,000 people with their advocacy and services, to better support victims of gender-based violence. In 2017, they reached more than 1.7 million people with their awareness-raising initiatives and programs. And in 2022, for International Women’s Day, they launched the #IamEveryWoman campaign to celebrate women from all backgrounds, and received support from 5 corporate sponsors. They also hosted talks with women in leadership positions, and organized the #March4Women to promote gender equality.

Ways to contribute: You can contribute to CARE International by donating through their website. And if you’d like to get involved directly, you can contact your country’s CARE International office to volunteer and event opportunities. 

Girls Not Brides: Advocating for the Rights of Vulnerable Girls

Girls Not Brides was founded in 2011 by The Elders, a group of international peacebuilders and human rights defenders, to tackle child marriages and other harmful practices, legal obstacles, and social norms that discriminate against young girls. In 2013, they became an independent charity and gained the support of high-profile human rights activists – Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Mrs. Graca Machel, and Sonita Alizadeh – as their Global Champions. Today, Girls Not Brides continues its work to abolish child marriages, increase insecurity, and promote the rights of girls everywhere. 

Their impact and transparency ratings: According to the UK’s Charity Commission, Girls Not Brides has regularly filed their annual accounts on time, showcasing their commitment to financial transparency. They also receive funding from a range of high-profile donors, including the Government of Canada, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA).

“To build a world where girls are free and able to reach their full potential.”

Girls Not Brides

What they do: Girls Not Brides partners with grassroots organizations across the globe to put an end to underage marriages and other harmful practices that affect girls. They have partnerships and coalitions spread across 24 different countries–including Nepal, Uganda, Zimbabwe, and the Netherlands–and work on programs that empower young girls, enabling them to reach their potential.

What they’ve achieved: Since their founding, Girls Not Brides has reached nearly 5,000 people annually in more than 30 countries with their workshops, advocacy, and training programs. For example, in 2020, they trained 132 people in Mozambique to coordinate and implement a new law to address child marriage. In the same year, they provided further training to 20 child protection officials and 29 municipal authorities in Togo about harmful practices against girls. And to celebrate International Women’s Day in 2022, they highlighted the impactful work of 6 female activists working to achieve gender equality. They also sponsored the Power to Girls campaign, which encouraged over 50 commitments and actions for girls’ rights. 

Ways to contribute: You can contribute to Girls Not Brides by donating through their website. You can also support one of their campaigns, or dedicate your wedding to ending harmful practices against young women.

Equality Now: Campaigning for Legislation That Protects Women’s Rights

Equality Now was founded in 1992 by three female attorneys and women’s rights activists, Jessica Neuwirth, Navanethem Pillay, and Feryal Gharahi, to highlight cases of gender discrimination and violence around the world. Together, they wanted to increase awareness and funding for women’s rights issues. By 1993, the charity gained support from the United Nations and its founders established their key areas of focus, including harmful and violent practices against women, and legal equality. Today, Equality Now continues to partner with organizations, raise funds for International Women’s Day, and advocate for women’s equality.

Their impact and transparency ratings: Equality Now currently holds an Accountability and Transparency score of 93 out of 100 from Charity Navigator. They also have an impressive Gold Seal of Transparency from GuideStar.

“Holding governments and lawmakers accountable for protecting and promoting the rights of women and girls.”

Equality Now

What they do: Equality Now works to achieve legal equality and promote rights for women and girls through legislation changes, policy shifts, and advocacy. They provide research and tools to empower vulnerable women, combat sex trafficking, and raise awareness on other harmful practices that negatively affect women. And every year for International Women’s Day, they run campaigns to showcase the importance of celebrating women.

What they’ve achieved: Since their inception, they have assisted over 13,500 women and girls through legal obstacles. For example, in 2019, they trained over 3,000 public officials and civil society actors, including judges, police, and activists on women’s rights issues. They also provided expert support in 15 litigation cases that challenged discriminatory laws and suppressed women’s rights. And in 2022, they partnered with 4 corporate brands to raise awareness on women’s issues for International Women’s Day.

Ways to contribute: You can support Equality Now by donating directly through their website. You can purchase Equality Now merchandise, and gear created for International Women’s Day, to show your support. You can also dedicate your birthday to them by encouraging your friends and family to give donations to their causes.

Dress for Success: Preparing Women for Economic Independence

Dress for Success was founded in 1996 by Nancy Lublin to provide professional tools to women in need. Lublin worked with a church in her local community to establish a clothing boutique that could offer clothing and resources to women in need. Since then, Dress for Success has expanded across more than 22 cities in the US, and 25 countries worldwide. 

Their impact and transparency ratings: Dress for Success has an impeccable Accountability and Transparency score of 100 out of 100 from Charity Navigator. They also hold a Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar. For example, in 2020, they spent approximately 87% of their income on their programs to empower women.

To empower women to achieve economic independence by providing a network of support, professional attire, and the development tools to help women thrive in work and in life.

Dress for Success

What they do: Dress for Success provides employment support and resources to women in need. They achieve this by offering suitable clothing for interviews and the workplace, and developing women’s skills and job readiness through workshops and trainings.

What they’ve achieved: Since their founding, Dress for Success has reached over 1.2 million women worldwide with personal and professional development services. For example, each year they assist approximately 75,000 women, 50% of whom are living below the poverty line. And to celebrate International Women’s Day, they started the ‘Your Hour Her Power’ campaign to raise funds for women affected by job loss, unemployment, or crisis. 

Ways to contribute: You can contribute to Dress for Success by donating through their website. 

Women for Women International: Empowering Women Survivors of Conflict

Women for Women International was founded in 1993 during the Bosnian war by Zainab Salbi, to reach and empower forgotten communities of women through social and economic enrichment programs. Having survived a previous war in her native Iraq, she was passionate about helping women who were also war survivors and affected by armed conflict. Today, Women for Women International celebrates International Women’s Day with themes, social media campaigns, and actionable ways to get involved in women’s movements.

Their impact and transparency ratings: Women for Women International currently holds an accountability and transparency score of 96 out of 100 from Charity Navigator. For example, in 2019, nearly 73% of their income was spent on its capacity-building programs and services. 

Our vision is to create a world in which all women determine the course of their lives and reach their full potential.

Women for Women International

What they do: Women for Women International provides educational resources, job training, skills workshops, and victim support services to women affected by conflict. They educate women on their voting rights, sexual and reproductive health, mental wellbeing, and other issues to help empower them within their communities beyond war. They also celebrate International Women’s Day annually with campaigns, awareness-raising events, and celebrations in their field offices.

What they’ve achieved: Since 1993, Women For Women International has assisted over 500,000 women affected by war and armed conflict with support services. For example, in 2018, they celebrated International Women’s Day by hosting 350 women in their Nigeria office to honor women’s rights. In the same year, nearly 400 people participated in their celebratory women’s rights events in Iraq. And in the Democratic Republic of Congo, they organized 2,000 people to march with them and advocate for women’s rights.

Ways to contribute: You can support Women for Women International by donating through their website, or by sponsoring a sister, which enables you to contribute directly to an individual’s success. 

Womankind Worldwide: Protecting the Rights of Women and Girls

Womankind Worldwide was founded in the United Kingdom in 1989 on International Women’s Day by Sir Alec Reed, a well-known charity donor, to promote women and girls’ rights around the world. Some of their initial projects were carried out in areas where women’s rights were most compromised, including Nepal, Kenya, and Uganda. Today, Womankind Worldwide continues to celebrate its founding and International Women’s Day by supporting women and girls in more than 13 countries

Their impact and transparency ratings: Womankind Worldwide publishes annual reports to showcase their commitment to financial transparency. They are registered with the UK’s Fundraising Regulator, ensuring their fundraising practices are ethical and sustainable. Similarly, they also receive grants and funding from high-profile contributors, including the UK and Dutch governments

“To achieve a world where the rights of all women and girls are respected, valued and realized.”

Womankind Worldwide

What they do: Womankind Worldwide works to make societies more gender-inclusive by ending violence against women, advancing women’s economic rights, and encouraging women’s participation in civil society. They currently implement women’s rights programs in 5 countries, including Nepal and Zimbabwe. 

What they’ve achieved: Womankind Worldwide has reached over a million women and girls with its programs and advocacy. On average, over 15,000 women and girls have benefited directly from their work annually. They’ve also supported 15 women to participate in international policy decision-making. And for International Women’s Day in 2022, they supported 3 projects to uplift women in 3 countries–Kenya, Uganda, and Ethiopia. 

Ways to contribute: You can support Womankind Worldwide by donating directly through their website, or you can fundraise for their campaigns that demand change for women’s rights. And to celebrate International Women’s Day, you can join their Make Connections campaign, which allows you to connect with other women’s movements and collectives.

ActionAid International: Safeguarding the Rights of Women in Crises

ActionAid International was founded in 1972 by Cecil Jackson-Cole, a well-known British humanitarian, to protect the rights of women most affected by conflict, crisis, disasters, and humanitarian emergencies. They adopted an international human rights approach to assisting women in conflict via economic, social, and legal empowerment through their programs, humanitarian work, and rights advocacy. Today, ActionAid International hosts a number of annual campaigns around the world to celebrate International Women’s Day.

Their impact and transparency ratings: ActionAid USA, the organization’s US branch, currently holds a Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar – the highest rank possible. They maintain a 3-star rating and a perfect Accountability and Transparency score of 100 out of 100, both from Charity Navigator. They also publish annual reports detailing their international financial activities. For example, in 2019, 82% of their worldwide income was spent on humanitarian support and programs. 

“We work to achieve social justice and gender equality, and to eradicate poverty.”

ActionAid International

What they do: ActionAid USA challenges social and cultural norms that suppress women and put them at risk for violence or discrimination. They use strategic, humanitarian programming and advocacy tools to promote gender equality. They also provide training and resources to female leaders, enabling them to drive social change within their communities. They currently work in over 30 countries, including Vietnam, Liberia, Haiti, Greece, and Australia.

What they’ve achieved: Since their founding, ActionAid International has responded to over 35 major disasters and emergencies and provided aid to the vulnerable women affected by crises. They also implement numerous capacity-building programs to promote women’s rights, such as training 42 women in Kenya as sustainable farmers, and improving the dietary health and livelihoods of over 4,000 women and girls in Cambodia. And in 2022, for International Women’s Day, they launched fundraisers to raise money for women working on the frontlines of disasters, and provided 26 ways to support and celebrate women. 

Ways to contribute: You can contribute to ActionAid International by donating through their website to a country office near you. You can browse their country profiles and donate to a women’s program in a country of your choice. For International Women’s Day, you can purchase a Gift in Action, which allows you to send a specialty gift item to women in need. 

​​Global Fund for Women: Funding Gender Justice Movements Worldwide

Global Fund for Women was founded in 1987 in California by four women’s activists: Anne Firth Murray, Frances Kissling, Laura Lederer, and Nita Barrow, to fund women’s rights movements. Together, they wanted to change the way women’s human rights groups were able to receive resources, and came together to create the Global Fund for Women with the approach of delivering financial support directly to grassroots women’s movements. Today, they provide funds to several global women’s movements, including campaigns for International Women’s Day.

Their impact and transparency ratings: Global Fund for Women currently holds an Accountability and Transparency score of 97 out of 100 from Charity Navigator. For example, in 2019, nearly 81% of their income was directly spent on women’s advocacy programs and grant funding.

“We fund bold, ambitious, and expansive gender justice movements to create meaningful change that will last beyond our lifetimes.”

Global Fund for Women

What they do: Global Fund for Women provides grants and funding to grassroots women’s movements around the world. They promote gender justice campaigns and implement a donation matching program for International Women’s Day. They also provide research findings, case studies, and media programming on women’s issues throughout the year.

What they’ve achieved: Since their inception, they have made a total of 12,242 grants to over 5,000 grassroots women’s movements, across 176 countries, including Serbia, Uganda, and Armenia. They have also partnered with several organizations to offer funding and support for their women’s empowerment projects. For example, in 2019, they provided funding for 10,876 female leaders to end gender-based violence in their local communities. And in 2017 for International Women’s Day, they supported 2 organizations in India and Nigeria with funding to close the digital gender gap.

Ways to contribute: You can support the Global Fund for Women by donating directly through their website. You can also sport some branded merchandise to support female empowerment on International Women’s Day (or every day)! 

Catalyst: Empowering Women in the Workplace

Catalyst was founded in 1962 by Felice N. Schwartz to challenge laws and policies that allowed women to be paid less than men. In the 1970s, they established multiple career resource centers to accommodate women entering the workforce. Since then, they’ve continued to advocate for more gender-inclusive workplaces across the US, and have expanded their reach internationally to several countries, including India, Japan, and Australia. 

Their impact and transparency ratings: Catalyst has a perfect Finance and Accountability score of 100 out of 100 from Charity Navigator. For example, in 2020, they spent approximately 66% of their income on their programs.

“Increasing the representation of women, particularly women from racially and ethnically marginalized groups, in corporate leadership and promoting equal access to career opportunities.”

Catalyst

What they do: Catalyst aims to advance women’s representation and rights within the workplace. They implement specialized programs to increase diversity and inclusion, and partner with companies to ensure they offer employment opportunities that empower women from all backgrounds. They also advocate for more female representation in leadership positions.

What they’ve achieved: Since their founding, Catalyst has reached approximately 20 companies and over 1,000 leaders with their Inclusive Leadership Initiative. For example, in 2016, they offered a learning program to engage men to become advocates for workplace inclusion, reaching 900 participants across 70 companies. And for International Women’s Day in 2022, they ran campaigns to promote more women CEOs and female leadership in corporate settings.

Ways to contribute: You can contribute to Catalyst by donating through their website. You can also become a supporter and learn how to be more inclusive in the workplace.

How Can You Select the Best Charities to Support?

The charities on the list are, we deem, the best charities for International Women’s Day. However, you may have a particular charity you want to support. Let’s look at what you can do to ensure your contribution has the most significant impact.

  • Check out the charity website. Charities that are worthy of your donations are transparent in their mission and their figures. Familiarize yourself with their history, mission, and values. Their website usually is the best place to start.
  • Identify the charity’s mission. Without a goal, the charity is likely to fail. If the charity’s mission isn’t clear, it’s probably worth looking for a charity that does have a clear mission. 
  • Check if the charity has measurable goals. An effective charity has clear goals. You want to know your donation will help the charity reach its goals. But if it doesn’t have targets, it’s likely to fail or squander your gift. The charity should be able to account for its spending and supply evidence of the work they do.
  • Assess the successes or goals the charity has achieved. You wouldn’t invest in a business if it kept missing its targets. In the same way, charities are like this too. If no one is assessing a charity’s progress in reaching its targets, the chances are they’re not making a substantial positive change.
  • Check the charity’s financials and stats. Trustworthy organizations will publish financial statements and reports each year. Some might be exempt from having to do so, but they should be able to provide them to public members who are interested in donating.
  • Locate sources who work with or benefit from the charity. Word of mouth and first-hand experience of a charity’s work lets you know the charity’s quality. If you’re able to do so, check out the charity for yourself or speak to someone familiar with it. This way, your donation will go to the right place. 

How Can You Best Support These Charities?

After you’ve made your decision, it’s time for you to decide on how you’d like to help the charities you’ve chosen. Check how you can help – each charity runs specific programs that have unique aims. Find out what the aim of such programs is and whether they are right for you. 

Here are a few ways you can help your chosen charity:

  • Donate money. You can find donation pages on the website of most charities. Your donation can be a one-time payment, or you can set it to be deducted regularly at different intervals. You can mostly pay via credit card, but some charities also take PayPal or Bitcoin payments.
  • Buy their official merchandise. The charities can also raise money by selling merchandise. So, you can support them by buying the mugs, shirts, caps, pens, pencils, and any other such items they may be selling. Ideally, you should buy as much as you can to share and spread the word about the charity’s activities.
  • Donate a percentage of your online purchases. If you bought anything on sites like Amazon lately, you’d find a prompt asking you to donate to your favorite charities through their Amazon Smile program. You can set this up so that your chosen charities will get a fraction of your online purchases.
  • Engage in volunteer work. As you’ve seen from our descriptions above, some charities engage in a lot of local and grassroots programs. You can help by taking on and organizing the program in your local area.
  • Help their fundraising efforts. You can spread the word about the charity in your workplace, school, church, etc., and hold creative fundraising drives on social media or offline within your small circles.
  • Share their stories. Most charities have compelling stories that you can share with your audience to attract more people to the cause.

Final Thoughts

Now it is up to you to select the charity that resonates most with you. And whichever charity you end up choosing and contributing to, we are sure that they will immensely appreciate your support. Hopefully, the information within this article has made this selection process a bit easier for you to support charities dedicated to International Women’s Day – based on the causes that matter most to you.

Stay impactful,

Illustration of a signature for Brittany



PS: Finally, I want to leave you with a thought-provoking TED talk from Dan Pallotta, a leading philanthropic activist and fundraiser, about what is wrong with the way we think about charities – and what we can do about it:

Sources

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Olivia Lopez

Olivia loves to research and write about all things related to social justice. She holds a Master’s degree in Human Rights and has worked and interned with a number of NGOs, including the UN. When she’s not writing, she likes to take her dog for walks, cook Mexican food, and learn new languages.

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