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Ivanka Trump’s WGDP Initiative’s $27 Million Grant Will Benefit Rwandan Women

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The Women’s Global Development and Prosperity (WGDP) initiative launched in February 2019 is already making progress. The initiative spearheaded by Ivanka Trump announced that it has $27 million for 14 projects in 22 countries. Consequently, this will benefit 100,000 women. According to Ivanka Trump, the initiative has an economic and security perspective. In a statement to The Associated Press, she said,

“We are just getting started, but we are committed to delivering real results that create transformational change for women in developing countries by helping them prosper in the workforce, succeed as entrepreneurs, and fight for legislative change.”

The women development initiative has three pillars namely; women enabled in the economy, women succeeding as entrepreneurs, and women prospering in the workforce. In a U.S. Global Leadership Coalition Discussion on Women’s Economic Empowerment Ivanka Trump said,

“We’re very, very excited about the private sector and NGO community coming alongside of us to amplify and accelerate our work.”

Future plans for the Women’s Global Development and Prosperity Initiative

Ivanka Trump in Ivory Coast

The launch of WGDP was accompanied by a $50 million investment from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). However, the ultimate goal of the program is to reach 50 million women in the developing world by 2025. Consequently, Mark Green, a USAID Administrator said, “investing in women builds countries that are resilient and self-reliant”. The new grant will fund;

  • Efforts to help Rwandan women break into the country’s energy sector,
  • An initiative in Latin America to equip women with the requisite skills to work in the tech sector in Peru, Mexico, Colombia, Chile, and Brazil,
  • A program to help Indonesian women working in the poultry industry.

President Donald Trump is asking Congress for another $100 million in a budget proposal for the initiative. There are certain African laws that undermine women development. Thus, Ivanka Trump was particularly happy with the government of Ivory Coast for updating the country’s family laws. Women can now inherit or acquire properties. She said,

 “We were really excited to applaud and celebrate Cote d’Ivoire changing their marriage law, which will now enable women to inherit property and to acquire property, which was previously not allowed under the law.”

Ivanka Trump cause of global women empowerment

Ivanka Trump

While President Trump may appear not to interfere in the cultures of other countries, Ivanka Trump approaches the topic differently. In 2018, at the United Nations General Assembly, President Donald Trump said,

“I honor the right of every nation in this room to pursue its own customs, beliefs, and traditions. [However], the United States will not tell you how to live or work or worship.”

Yet, Ivanka Trump has been unrelenting in her push for women empowerment. In fact, her meeting with Vice President Daniel Kablan Duncan on her trip to Abidjan in April facilitated the alteration in Ivory Coast’s law. Furthermore, she has been promoting women empowerment in several high-profile international events including WomenConnect and Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (We-Fi). Legal barriers to women’s economic participation will be part of next G-7 summit in Biarritz, France.

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