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Charities Earned $1.8 Billion in Grants for Human Rights in 2012

In 2012, foundations around the world raised a total of $1.8 billion dollars in grants to promote human rights, a 6% increase over 2011. 774 foundations raised that money for 11,000 non-profits, for a total of over 19,000 grants.

This information comes from a new report by the Foundation Center and the International Human Rights Funders Group (IHRFG), who have been working on such reports since 2013, when their first report focused on the year 2010. Their goal is to collate as much information as they can, in order to help charities focused on human rights issues. That data can help foundations figure out what kind of grants to write for, or find new partners to work with.

Some of the most impressive and easiest to parse data presented by the report are the total dollars of grants received in different parts of the world. In North America, for example, foundations received $821 million, the largest amount by far. The second highest, $237 million, went to Sub-Saharan Africa. Asia and the Pacific received $141 million, followed by Latin America and Mexico with $132 million. Western Europe received $110 million in grants, while Eastern Europe, Central Asia, and Russia received a combined total of $79 million. The Middle East and Africa received $56 million, while he Caribbean received $17 million.

The largest portion of those total dollars, about 24%, went to foundations focused on equality and freedom from discrimination. General human rights groups received about 15%, while groups focused on sexual and reproductive rights, health and wellness rights, social and cultural rights, or labor rights each earned at least 5%.

Groups working with and for women and girls earned 27% of the grants and 26% of the money. Children and youth focused groups received 21% and 19% of the grants and dollars, respectively.


Philanthropic People: Cate Blanchett

Cate Blanchett
Jaguar PS /

Academy award-winning Australian actress Cate Blanchett is one of the biggest cultural icons of our time, and one of the most humanitarian-minded. Her career has consisted of playing compelling, remarkable characters that have reached countless audiences worldwide. In addition to being a cultural leader on the silver screen, the acclaimed actress has spent many years as a humanitarian leader behind the scenes, supporting causes that benefit youth, women, human rights, the arts, and more.

In 2007, Blanchett helped launch the “Who On Earth Cares Campaign” in cooperation with the Australian Conservation Foundation, an initiative to improve the environmental quality of life for people in Australia. In 2011, she partnered with the Clear For Life initiative to bring clean drinking water and more sustainable practices to underserved parts of Asia. She has supported charities such as 10×10, Kids Help Line, and SolarAid, and has always been a vocal advocate for women’s and human rights.

Blanchett was one of the narrators in the film Girl Rising, a documentary and coinciding initiative to provide girls worldwide with access to education. She has long been an advocate for gender equality in the arts. Earlier this month, as the world watched her accept the Academy Award for “Best Actress in a Leading Role” for her performance in Blue Jasmine, Blanchett took the opportunity to address the gender gap in media and film as she gave her acceptance speech.

During the speech she said, “[Thank you] for so bravely and intelligently distributing the film and to the audiences who went to see it and perhaps those of us in the industry who are still foolishly clinging to the idea that female films with women at the center are niche experiences. They are not. Audiences want to see them and, in fact, they earn money,” of the history of sexism that has prevented women from earning the same kind of acclaim as their male counterparts in Hollywood. She also remarked, “The world is round, people,” to which her peers and female artists worldwide cheered.

A major supporter of the arts and cultural philanthropy, of human rights and the environment, Cate Blanchett is not only an award-winning actress, but a model humanitarian.

Organizations Profiles

John Prendergast Fights For Human Rights in Africa

John Prendergast
IMG: via Enough Project

John Prendergast is, in many ways, the model activist. He has dedicated the past thirty years to advocating for human rights abroad, and his efforts have allotted every organization he has worked with enormous amounts of support from passionate philanthropists. He is an author, human rights campaign leader, an advisor to prominent philanthropists, and a hands-on leader whose vast knowledge about violence in Africa has allotted him great success in his peace-oriented initiatives. In short, he has made an incredible difference.

One of the things that sets Prendergast apart from other activists on the front-lines of human injustice in Africa is the lasting relationships he forges with philanthropic people. The activist and author knows that change cannot be made through the efforts of one person, but that it takes a dedicated coalition of like-minded people to provide significant help to others in need. Throughout his career he has advised celebrities in their own humanitarian work, has sparked philanthropy aimed at worthy causes, and has even coauthored books with famous public figures in order to raise awareness about atrocities taking place abroad.

To learn more about John Prendergast, check out our profile.