Industree awarded the White House Women’s Global Development and Prosperity (W-GDP) Fund

The White House-led Women’s Global Development and Prosperity (W-GDP) initiative seeks to economically empower over 50 million women in the developing world by 2025. This funding comes from the larger $50 million W-GDP Fund, which is overseen by USAID. Of the 120 proposals submitted, 14 awardees were selected, totalling $27 million in Incentive Funds. Industree is the only selected partner in India to receive this grant.
Ivanka Trump, Advisor to the President, said of the Incentive fund, “we are thrilled by the enthusiastic response since the launch of W-GDP. Through our three core pillars of women prospering in the workforce, succeeding as entrepreneurs, and advancing economic equality under the law, we are committed to delivering real results that create transformational change for women in developing countries.” 

Industree Foundation holistically tackles the root causes of poverty by creating an ownership based, organised creative manufacturing ecosystem for micro-entrepreneurs. Industree Foundation’s comprehensive deep hand holding approach helps communities assess their traditional skill base, organise them into production units, develop products that appeal to modern markets, and create consistent demand to create sustainable businesses and livelihoods. This has led to significant social gains such as social security, better health care, improved resilience to crisis and overall resilience. Having already impacted 60,000 producers, the aim of this grant is to provide deep handholding support and strengthen the resources of 6,800 producers in the next 3 years, to achieve both economic impact (Increased incomes, regular work, and financial stability) and social impact (improved agency and empowerment of women at home and in their communities, as well as better educational opportunities for the next generation). The W-GDP funds will also serve as a catalytic fund, creating a pathway to forge new partnerships and networks that will, in turn, act as stepping-stones for access to philanthropic and blended capital. This broadening of partners and funding opportunities will support Industree’s Mission Creative Million aimed at impacting one million producers over ten years and eventually our long-term target of millions of producers across the globe.

Talking on this occasion Neelam Chhiber, Co-Founder and Managing Trustee of Industree Crafts Foundation, commented, “We are proud to achieve one more milestone. I believe that blended finance is the way to build the solutions to reach the underserved which impact enterprises are unable to reach. An initial dose of philanthropic equity can lay the foundation to build self-sustainable models, which could then leverage the trillions of dollars available in Impact investing” .

USAID will manage and monitor the use all of the awarded grants and will work with congress in a bipartisan manner on these initiatives.  USAID Administrator Mark Green noted “We know that investing in women builds countries that are resilient and self-reliant. The Women’s Global Development and Prosperity Initiative will accelerate the achievement of these goals by leveraging the collective resources and expertise of the U.S. Government to unlock the full economic potential of women around the world.” 

Neelam is the WomenChangeMakers Fellow supported by Womanity Foundation and was also chosen as the Schwab Foundation/ World Economic forum’s Schwab Social Entrepreneur of the Year for India. Industree’s work is continuously supported by both funders and investors that include Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth, Womanity Foundation, UNDP, British Asian Trust, Future Group, Tata Trusts, Standard Chartered Bank, Grassroots Business Fund and The Freedom Fund.

Industree has also been able to leverage considerable support from various government departments in India. It has an extensive network of NGOs and grassroots organisations among its field partners, through which it is able to reach out to tens of thousands of rural producers.

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