GPP Year in Review 2020

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Director’s Letter

Matthew Hart

Executive Director

Dear Colleagues,

Welcome 2021! In 2020 we experienced an unprecedented global health crisis, emboldened ethno-nationalists, and increasing state-sponsored homophobia. Still, our communities rose to these challenges, defined new ways of working together, and rekindled our commitments to collective power and collective care. LGBTI Philanthropy rebuilt how we partner and collaborate, how we manage and define risk. We are even more aware of the ongoing precarity of our individual, organizational, and collective realities and our responsibilities to respond.

Like all of us, GPP made a pivot from our ambitious in-person meeting agendas.

We learned and shared. We published data and analysis on global LGBTI funding, on the funding of the “anti-gender” opposition movement and our progressive philanthropic responses, and on the LGBTI funder response to COVID-19. Our data has enabled, informed, and unleashed extraordinary, responsive philanthropic resources.

We showed up. We ensured LGBTI grantmaker participation in online civil society convenings, developing sessions and other content in collaboration with LGBTI movements around the world. GPP continues to curate innovative programs towards cultivating our shared efforts to unlock new and better resources for our communities.

We thought deeply about how change can happen in these times. In consultation with our advisory committee, partners, and executive committee, we paused our planning for an ambitious global summit originally planned to be held in person in December 2020. With that pause, we reflected and relaunched the effort as Shimmering Solidarity: Global Rights Summit. Now designed as a four-month virtual series, this summit will be a platform for practical and multisectoral collaboration, networking, and ideas exchange across issue areas and world regions.

We utilized and expanded our partnerships for resource activation. In this extraordinary year, the GPP staff and members redoubled our efforts to work with donor government partners and other funders to expand and increase financial commitments. Together we have built and helped to define new pipelines of resources from several governments and new philanthropic actors.

We grew the collective. 2020 also saw our membership grow with our newest member: Initiative Sankofa D’Afrique de l’Ouest (ISDAO). We also welcomed a number of new donor partners in support of GPP programs.

Please consider this a personal invitation to join a webinar, register for our Global Summit, read and share our newest research. Together we are stronger.


Shimmering Solidarity: Global Rights Summit

GPP and co-sponsoring partners invite you to join our Shimmering Solidarity: Global Rights Summit. This event is a four-month virtual series, in March-June 2021, focused on grantmaker responses to the “anti-gender” movement and related global anti-rights agendas. The Global Rights Summit is an opportunity for grantmakers, philanthropic networks, and aligned colleagues to build shared analysis around anti-rights attacks and strategize towards multi-sectoral progressive philanthropic responses.


GPP is committed to cultivating and deepening the knowledge, skills, and capacity of GPP members and other funders in support of global LGBTI issues. GPP and member funds often commission new research exploring and documenting opportunities, challenges, and trends in the field. Learn more.

2017-2018 Global Resources Report

In May 2020, Global Philanthropy Project and Funders for LGBTQ Issues published the 2017-2018 Global Resources Report: Government & Philanthropic Support for LGBTI Communities (GRR), a comprehensive report on the state of foundation and government funding for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) issues. This report documents over 19,764 grants awarded by 800 foundations, NGO intermediary funders, and corporations and by 15 donor government and multilateral agencies over the two-year period of 2017-2018. This new edition documented a total of $560 million, showing that global LGBTI funding grew by 11%, or over $57 million (USD).

In the first quarter of 2021, we will release the full Global Resources Report in Spanish and French translation.

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Meet the Moment: A Call for Progressive Philanthropic Response to the Anti-Gender Movement

In early 2020, Global Philanthropy Project worked with our member organizations and philanthropic partners to develop two related pieces of private research: 1) a report mapping the funding of the global “anti-gender” or “anti-gender ideology” movement, and 2) a report mapping the progressive philanthropic response. Webinar launches for these private reports reached over 300 grantmakers.

“Meet the Moment” is a public document developed to share key learning and to offer additional analysis gained in the comparison of the two reports. Additionally, we share insights based on comparing global and regional LGBTI funding data as documented in the 2017-2018 Global Resources Report. These findings offer a clear call to action: progressive movements and their philanthropic partners are being outspent by hundreds of millions of dollars each year, and the institutions providing that opposition funding have developed sophisticated and coordinated systems to learn, co-fund, and expand their influence.

In the first quarter of 2021, we will release Meet the Moment in Spanish and French translation.

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Where are the Global COVID-19 Resources for LGBTI Communities?

In April 2020, GPP launched a short survey of all GPP member organizations as well as non-GPP members within the top 20 funders of global LGBTI issues, assessing the initial response of global LGBTI philanthropy to the pandemic. A key outcome from that report was the identified role for GPP to monitor shifts in resource flows to LGBTI movements and communities as well as the broader impact of COVID-19 on international development and humanitarian assistance funding. In September 2020, we conducted a second-phase survey of the leading government, multilateral, and philanthropic funders of global LGBTI issues.

GPP’s forthcoming report on the global COVID-19 resources for LGBTI communities reveals how LGBTI grantmaking organizations and their grantee partners have made important pivots in 2020 to respond to the pandemic and lack of humanitarian-funding inclusion. The report challenges the lack of LGBTI-inclusion in the global humanitarian response, and outlines the possible long-term implications of COVID-19 resourcing for the global LGBTI movement. The report will be made available by January 2021 on our COVID-19 Resources Page.

Click here to register for the January 28th Report Launch.

Meet the Donors

Due to the pandemic, GPP was unable to provide our Meet the Donors Panel at regional LGBTI conferences. Instead, GPP created a video panel to share a broad overview of the types of philanthropic institutions and funding flows in the LGBTI community.

The video includes background information about philanthropy, fundraising, and the current state of worldwide LGBTI funding based on the 2017-218 Global Resources Report. and a discussion with panelists sharing information about their organizations, the roles they see for their institution within the funding ecosystem, and how they go about their own work as grantmakers and partners.

Thank you to our panelists representing FRI – The Norwegian Organization for Sexual and Gender Diversity, International Trans Fund, Open Society Foundations Human Rights Initiative, UHAI-EASHRI, Urgent Action Fund for Women, ViiV Healthcare’s Positive Action.

Meet the Donors Video

This video provides a broad overview of the types of philanthropic institutions and funding flows in the LGBTI community. The video reviews some background information about philanthropy, fundraising, and the current state of worldwide LGBTI funding based on the 2017-218 Global Resources Report: Government and Philanthropic Support for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Intersex Communities.

By the Numbers

Government and Multilateral Taskforce

Government and Multilateral Task Force

In this extraordinary year, the GPP staff and members of the Government and Multilateral Task Force (GMTF) redoubled our efforts to work with donor government partners to expand and increase financial commitments. The pandemic required the GMTF to shift focus from in-person engagement with government and multilateral donors at key events such as the Equal Rights Coalition conference to engaging virtually.

Working with our members and LGBTI civil society based in the governments that GPP seeks to influence, we provided detailed data and field analysis to inform the strategies of several donors. GPP also actively engaged each of the government and multilateral donors supporting global LGBTI issues, to understand and document how they responded to the pandemic. Such analysis formed an important part of our forthcoming COVID-19 report, which may open pathways for our network to engage with a new set of government and multilateral actors working in humanitarian response. Together we have built and helped define new pipelines of resources from several governments that will soon be announced.

Snapshot: GPP’s Matthew Hart and Dave Scamell traveled to Germany and, in consultation with LSVD, met with government and development representatives to build and advance these relationships, resulting in a new GPP partnership with BMZ. The trip included a Berlin event on “German Philanthropy’s Role in the Global LGBTI Funding Landscape,” which included a preview of findings from the 2017-18 Global Resources Report. Following the trip, GPP was engaged by GIZ, the German Government’s principal development cooperation implementing mechanism, to serve as an expert informant for GIZ’s scoping research regarding future funding in southern Africa.

Working Groups

Individual Donor Working Group

This year, the Individual Donor Working Group (IDWG) deepened our work with wealth advisories in the financial sector. After identifying a new group of leaders in the sector, the IDWG has continued to invite wealth advisors to join calls and virtual convenings, and has provided tailored consultations and in-depth research to capacitate their work to better advise high net wealth clients. Together, the IDWG has begun a process of exploring queer lens investments for our members’ institutions.

Trans and Intersex Funding Working Group

In 2020, the Trans and Intersex Funding Working Group (TIFWG) rolled out an ambitious work plan. The WG provided strategic recommendations to the Hewlett Foundation’s International Reproductive Health Program Strategic Plan to incorporate trans and intersex communities in their policy refresh. Together, the TIFWG collaborated with the Government and Multilateral Taskforce to ensure trans and intersex funding was prioritized across donor government advocacy. TIFWG supported the development of the COVID-19 Survey and hosted two webinars for donors on the impacts of COVID-19 on intersex communities and on trans communities. Combined, these webinars hosted 160 registrants.

GPP Members

Thank you to GPP’s 2022 Executive Committee for their support and partnership. 

Co-Chairs: Mukami Marete, Co-Executive Director of UHAI-EASHRI; and David Sampson, Deputy Director of the Baring Foundation.

Members: Francisco Buchting, Vice President of Grants, Programs, and Communications at Horizons Foundation; Rebecca Fox, Vice President of Programs at Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice; and Alli Jernow, Social Justice Program Vice President at Arcus Foundation.

Thank you to GPP’s 22 member organizations for your partnership in 2021 and beyond!

American Jewish World Service, Arcus Foundation, Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice, Baring Foundation, Dreilinden gGmbH, Ford Foundation, Foundation for a Just Society, Fund for Global Human Rights, Global Fund for Women, Hivos, Horizons Foundation, International Trans Foundation, Initiative Sankofa D’Afrique de L’Ouest, Mama Cash, Oak Foundation, Open Society Foundations, The Other Foundation, Sigrid Rausing Trust, UHAI – the East African Sexual Health and Rights Initiative, Urgent Action Fund for Women’s Human Rights, Wellspring Philanthropic Fund.

GPP is a fiscally sponsored program of Community Initiatives.

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