French Gates Is Throwing Serious Cash at Women's Rights

Will donate $1B, doesn't want her granddaughter growing up 'with fewer rights than I had'
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted May 28, 2024 10:25 AM CDT
French Gates Is Giving $1B to Women's Rights
Melinda French Gates speaks at a women's leaders forum at IMF headquarters in Washington, on April 13, 2023.   (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana, File)

Melinda French Gates is opening up her checkbook to the tune of $1 billion over the next two years, and it's going toward "people and organizations working on behalf of women and families around the world, including on reproductive rights in the United States," she writes in an op-ed in the New York Times. French Gates points to a funding desert, noting that only 2% of giving in the US is aimed at groups that focus on women and girls, and "only about half a percentage point goes to organizations focused on women of color specifically." As a result, "as shocking as it is to contemplate, my 1-year-old granddaughter may grow up with fewer rights than I had," she writes.

French Gates is distributing the cash through her Pivotal Ventures group, and NBC News notes that checks have already gone out to the likes of the National Women's Law Center, the National Domestic Workers Alliance, and the Center for Reproductive Rights. And while French Gates says she's long focused on contraception abroad, since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, she's refocusing her efforts at home: "Because I have been given this extraordinary opportunity, I am determined to do everything I can to seize it and to set an agenda that helps other women and girls set theirs, too." (More Melinda French Gates stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.