Gates Gives Big to Support Every Woman Every Child

Having only been announced at the Third International Financing for Development Conference that took place in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia earlier this summer, the Global Financing Facility (GFF) to support the Every Woman Every Child program has already received some pretty major investments and commitments. Among the big dollar donations from private organizations was the Gates Foundation, which committed to giving $75 million to GFF over the next five years.

So far, we’ve been quite impressed with GFFs fundraising chops. Especially since the Third International Financing for Development Conference took place in mid-July of this year and it has already announced $12 billion in funding from international, public, and private organizations. New commitments of $214 million include $33 million from the government of Japan, $50 million from USAID, and that five-year, $75 million grant from the Gates Foundation.

Related: Gates Foundation: Grants for Global Health

The grant from Gates will go toward forwarding the UN's Global Strategy for Women’s, Children’s, and Adolescents’ Health. Started in 2010, the strategy began as a collective global effort to improve the health and worldwide survival rates of women and children. Although progress has been made in this regard, the strategy has since evolved to include a greater focus on: 

  • Newborn health and survival
  • Young people living in fragile states and conflict settings
  • Improving and building health system resilience
  • Improving access to quality healthcare services 

The updated strategy also has a heavy focus on working in what it refers to as “health enhancing sectors such as women’s empowerment, education, nutrition, water, sanitation and hygiene." The Every Woman Every Child program grew out of the G lobal Strategy for Women’s, Children’s, and Adolescents’ Health. 

Although Every Woman Every Child is global in scope, it will focus its attentions on countries experiencing significant funding gaps for reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health. Currently, the annual funding gap in all three areas stands at just over $33 billion.

The GFF is hoping to support 62 high burden, low and lower-middle income countries over the next five years and recently welcomed eight new countries into the fold. These countries include Bangladesh, Cameroon, India, Liberia, Mozambique, Nigeria, Senegal and Uganda.

The Gates Foundation’s big commitment to the Every Woman Every Child program comes as no surprise. Gates has been supporting global family planning and maternal, newborn and child health efforts since the mid-1990s. Other major GFF funders include the Global Fund to Fight HIV/ADIS, Tuberculosis and Malaria; and Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance.

Related: How the Gates Foundation Helps Expectant Moms Survive the Survivable