Grant Making

Women's Fund of Rhode Island

Grant Making

WFRI will be accepting grant applications between January 9 and March 15, 2024. Our grant cycle runs every other year, so if you miss this cycle, our next application period will open sometime in early 2026. To apply for this grant cycle, fill out our 2024 grant application.

During our 2022-23 cycle Women’s Fund of Rhode Island (WFRI) made grants totaling $130,000 for innovative proposals to achieve gender equity and help level the playing field for women and girls in Rhode Island. Several of the grants included a racial justice component and all are relevant to concurrent health and racial disparities.

WFRI uses social change grantmaking to achieve gender equity and social justice, focus on systemic solutions, and address the unique needs of women and girls. Since its launch in 2001, the WFRI Grant Program has awarded more than $900,000 to organizations and programs in Rhode Island that empower women and girls. These grants are made possible through the generosity of donors of the WFRI. 

To give you a sense of what we mean by funding gender equity through systemic change, our most recent grant recipients and awarded programs include:  

  • Housing Works RI ($15,000)- Support research and advocacy highlighting the state of women and housing as it relates to living wages
  • RI Coalition to End Homelessness ($15,000)- Support training and stipends for homeless and formerly homeless women to create a Voices of the Homeless Speaker's Bureau
  • RI Black Business Association ($19,600)- Support for strengths based career coaching and financial planning for 15 BIPOC participants to assist with asset and generational wealth building
  • Economic Progress Institute ($20,000)- Support for creating equity impact assessment tools and an advocacy campaign to pass legislation requiring the use of these tools when considering future legislation
  • Rhode Island Working Families Party ($20,000)- Support for building women's power electorally and through advocacy, united around transformative child care investment
  • Rhode Island for Community & Justice ($17,530)- Support for Young Women's Equity Council to establish a Diversity, Equity & Inclusion training and mentoring program and a safe space for young women of color to become champions for anti-racism and equity in their schools and future workplaces.
  • Urban Perinatal Education Center ($20,000)- Support to address the perinatal disparities and health system discrimination experienced by BIPOC communities


Our Grant Program

  • Launched in 2001

  • Supporting programs that empower women and girls to address gender inequity

  • More than $1,125,000 has been distributed to gender lens programming to date

  • Made possible by donations to Women’s Fund of Rhode Island

WFRI Grant Priorities

  • Systems change ideas that work to level the playing field for women and girls in Rhode Island 
  • Civic engagement and leadership

  • Economic self-sufficiency and justice, particularly fair/equal pay and increased/living wages

  • Women and girls health and well-being, particularly freedom and access to reproductive health and/or freedom from sexual harassment


WFRI's grant-making supports systemic change.  Proposals need to demonstrate one or more of the following:

  • A capacity to address root causes of problems, challenges and issues

  • Impact on societal attitudes or behaviors

  • Positive long-term change for women and girls

  • Expanded choice for women and girls

  • Empowerment of women and girls to challenge the status quo

  • Changes in policies and systems to provide full participation by women and girls

WFRI will fund the following types of organizations:

  • Non-profit organizations and groups that demonstrate tax-exempt status under the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Code 501 (c) 3
  • Groups or organizations that submit an application through a fiscal sponsor, e.g. a tax-exempt organization under IRS Code 501 (c) that agrees to accept funds on its behalf
  • Schools receiving funding from the government
  • Eligible Organizations or groups that serve women and girls in Rhode Island

Funding Restrictions

We will not fund the following:

  • Federal, state, county, and city government agencies
  • Religious organizations for religious purposes.  Although there is no restriction on funding faith-based organizations, all WFRI-funded projects /services must be secular
  • For-profit business ventures
  • Endowment or capital campaigns
  • Individuals or scholarships
  • Fundraising events or conferences
  • Debt reduction
  • Medical research
  • Campaigns to elect candidates to public office
  • Projects that discriminate on the basis of ethnicity, race, color, creed, religion, national origin, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or any veteran's status.

How Much Funding is Dedicated to Women & Girls in RI?