Grant Making

Women's Fund of Rhode Island

Grant Making

We are no longer accepting grant proposals for the 2022-2023 grant cycle. Our next application window will open in January 2024.

The Women’s Fund of Rhode Island (WFRI) is excited to announce financial commitments totaling $130,000 in grant funding to seven organizations over the next two years for their innovative proposals to achieve gender equity and help level the playing field for women and girls in Rhode Island. $65,000 will be distributed in 2022 and the same amount in 2023. Several of the grants include 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 $810,000 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


Current funding includes a two year commitment to funded organizations, provided they use funding for the same/similar purposes, provide WFRI with periodic updates on project progress, and with the understanding that we can only provide funds if they are available. Donations are key to our ability to grant funds. A new proposal must be submitted each time a grant is requested. Previous funding does not guarantee continued funding, either for an organization or a project. Go to for the online portal or download a .pdf of the application below.

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This powerpoint gives an example of what it means to give "through a gender lens." WFRI volunteers are trained in gender lens giving concepts prior to embarking on the grant review process. The grant review team is made up of a diverse group of volunteers trained in gender lens giving. After a thorough review and discussion process, the grant review team recommends which proposals the WFRI Board should fund. The next grant review process will not begin until 2022. If you would like to be considered as a volunteer for the review process, please contact our Executive Director at

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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.