Criterion Institute is making a long-term commitment to addressing gender-based violence, directing one third of our resources over the next five years toward strategies for using finance as a tool to effect change on this crucial issue. We’re pleased to announce that generous grants from the Wallace Global Fund and Tara Health Foundation are helping us fulfill this commitment.
Worldwide, an estimated one in three women experiences physical or sexual abuse in her lifetime. In the Pacific Islands region, where women’s rights leaders convened early last year for Criterion’s intensive training session, TOOLKIT on Finance as a Strategy for Social Change, as many as 60% of women are affected by violence.
These numbers, in the language of finance, are material. Like climate change, gender-based violence –- presents a risk to any industry or company. What if we could influence how that risk is assessed, the data investors see as valuable, and how finance professionals respond?
We believe we can. Against the backdrop of 2017’s #TimesUp and #MeToo movements, the rallying cries of those affected by violence in industries as diverse as Hollywood, agriculture and manufacturing–Criterion has been working with investors, philanthropists and diverse social change experts to develop an approach to using finance as one of many strategies necessary to address gender-based violence. This includes:
Building a coalition of investors and aggregating intent to invest in solutions to gender-based violence
Engaging individuals and organizations with expertise in gender-based violence to design informed strategies for using finance to affect the issue
Working with fund managers to respond to growing demand for products that address gender-based violence