Message From The Chairperson & Acting E.D.
2018 was a year for HER Fund with many new excitments and challenges.
The brand new logo of HER Fund was officially launched in 2018. We have chosen purple, a symbol of intellectual woman, as the main color and enhanced it with vibrant yellow. The word “HER” showcases the dynamic nature of women’s rights organization, with the letters “H”, “E” and “R” look like dancing women energetically advocating for equality. The yellow ribbon weaves through “HER”, representing women connected and supporting each other. “HER” is also a symbol of how HER Fund builds bridges between marginalized women and the wider community.
The unique brand new logo design, image of energetic and intellectual women, tells our mission to walk with marginalized women’s organization to promote women’s human rights and gender equality. In the meantime, our website was also revamped to promote public understanding of our work and build a closer relationship with the community.
This year also witnessed development of HER Fund’s management team. Ms. Judy Kan took on the position of Acting Executive Director since October, 2017. Under her leadership, HER Fund organized “SHERO WALK” and other new fundraising events, and started capacity building projects to provide more learning opportunities to local marginalized women groups. In addition, HER Fund has participated in regional and international women’s fund network meetings, which promoted regional cooperation and network and increased public awareness on gender equality issues.
As a community women’s fund, HER Fund raises funds for grant-making and capacity building. Our mission is to advance the rights of women in Hong Kong, especially marginalized and grassroots women, for social changes and to promote gender equality. We are so fortunate to have supportive friends all along the way.
On behalf of the Executive Committee, we would like to express our sincere gratitude to our devoted staff team and volunteers, and to supporters, grantee partners, donors and supporting partners for their unfailing support to HER Fund!
Sharing by Partners & Supporters
(Corporate Responsibility Manager – Asia)
About HER Fund
HER Fund, established in 2004 by a group of committed women activists, is the only community fund in Hong Kong to promote human rights and help improve the lives of grassroots and marginalized women through grant-making, capacity building and bridging resources.
Total Direct Grant Amount
No. of Grantee Partners
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No. of Women Leaders Received Training
Time Contribution by Volunteers
11 media coverage
on HER Fund and grantee partners
She Made Grants & Empowered Her
Many people thought that gender equality in Hong Kong have been doing quite well. In fact, gender pay gap is still wide, and women still bear more responsibility as care-takers… it's still a long way to gender equality. HER Fund, through grant-making, advances for the rights of marginalized women. We support our grantee partners in empowerment and awareness-raising, lobbying and forming alliances to promote changes in society, in order to improve their living conditions.
Aside from providing sustainable and flexible funding, we stand by the grantee partners by sharing opinions, referring networks and resources, introducing donors and volunteers, and being their organizational referees. Our support helps sustainable development of their work, and their voices to be heard by more people.
Freedom from Violence
According to statistics of the Social Welfare Department, over 84% of the victims of newly reported spouse or cohabitant battering cases and over 96% of the victims of newly reported sexual violence cases in 2017 were women. Besides physical and sexual violence, violence against women also includes any practices that harm a person because the person is a woman, such as economic abuse and diverse forms of harmful practices that negatively affect women’s physical and psychological well-being. Violence against women is a brutal consequence of gender inequalities.
This year, we made grants to support various projects to research on violence faced by teenage girls, new arrival women, sexual minority and other women. The grants also support activities and workshop to promote awareness on violence and its gender-based causes, and enhance participants’ readiness to protect themselves, so as to advocate for changes in the long run.
Association Concerning Sexual Violence Against Women – work for the elimination of second trauma
In 2007, Hong Kong government adopted new practice to appoint one social worker as case manager for victims of sexual violence to coordinate services provided by the police, medical personnel, legal practitioners and counselors, etc. However, the new practice still require victims to recall and repeat the experiences to different strangers in the process, which causes second trauma to them. Association Concerning Sexual Violence Against Women has strived for the establishment of a victim oriented one-stop sexual violence service at Hospital Authority facilities to provide a safe, private and supportive environment for emergency medical service, reporting to police, forensic examination, counseling and other services.
This year, HER Fund made grants for “The early research on the establishment of sexual violence crisis center from the perspective of emergency medical service”, the project of Association Concerning Sexual Violence Against Women. Through data collection, study on overseas practices in sexual violence services in Australia, the United Kingdom, Taiwan, etc., basic principles of supporting services were documented to promote protection of sexual violence victims at the legal level, and to develop feasible solutions for Hong Kong.Click here to view other projects.
Freedom from Discrimination
No individual should receive differential treatment or even discrimination on the basis of one’s gender, race, age, sexual orientation, economic status, etc., rather than according to actual merit. However, in fact, some women in Hong Kong still live under discrimination and are marginalized by the mainstream society, making them economically disadvantaged, socially excluded and susceptible to violence. Their basic human rights denied, these women encounters more barriers to fully develop their potential and participate in the society.
This year, HER Fund continued to make grants for numerous communications and community education projects, bringing out the voices of breastfeeding mothers, sexual minority, migrant domestic workers, and other marginalized women to the attention of public via various channels. At the same time, through trainings and talks, the projects helped the marginalized women to better understand their own situations and human rights, and also encouraged them to participate in anti-discrimination work to promote social changes.
GdotTV – regaining voice through new media
There are different types of discrimination towards sexual minorities in the society. Public have insufficient understanding on multiple genders and some hold biased views. In Hong Kong, fighting for equality for sexual minorities encountered many challenges in recent years. GdotTV engages the LGBT+ movement and regain the right to speak for sexual minorities through new media. At the same time, the sexual minorities were empowered through training in media work, transforming them from passive audience to active actors.
This year, HER Fund made grants for “Plan G – Video Production Training for Sexual Minority”, a 3-months-project of GdotTV, to train 15 members through 3 theoretical lectures, proposal writing, one-week video-shooting and two-day video-editing workshops. The project produced three videos which discuss stereotype of Tomboy, discrimination on bisexual individuals, and the Third Gender (Cantonese and Chinese subtitle only). This project enhanced members’ skills, knowledge and psychological readiness to encourage their further participation in media work, in order to raise understanding of public and sexual minority on the issue, as well as regain voices in media.
Freedom from Poverty
Though being one of the richest cities in the world, poverty still exists in Hong Kong. According to the Census and Statistics Department, the gender pay gap rate of poor households in 2015 was nearly 40%, the participation rate of women under poverty in the labour force was 20%. Women bear heavy responsibilities to take care of their families and engage in unpaid domestic work. As a result, women have difficulties to find a paid job, or have to take up causal work with minimum wage level without any welfare benefits and indemnification.
Besides, many ethnic minorities and migrant domestic workers are marginalized by the mainstream society and deprived of their basic human right due to language barriers, social isolation and lack of social service support. As a result, they face difficulties in finding jobs and earning a reasonable income which eventually result in poverty.
Union of Nepalese Domestic workers in Hong Kong – get rid of double exploitations
It is common that migrant domestic workers in Hong Kong are exploited by employment agencies. Before coming to Hong Kong, the migrant workers have to pay an expensive employment referral fee to the agency in their own country, which are often unaffordable to them and the agency would force them to borrow money; after coming to Hong Kong, the local employment agency would take away their passports. As a result, most migrant domestic workers work in forced labour. Moreover, some employers underpay them with different excuses, and ask them to sign receipt of statutory wages which they did not received. Most workers do not have proper holidays, enough rest hours or reasonable living space – they live in kitchens, storage rooms, or even worse places. Due to language barriers, they do not have sufficient knowledge about their rights, and are afraid to speak up for fear of being fired. They could only bear the situation alone.
This year, HER Fund made grants for “Educate Nepalese Domestic workers’ basic rights through numerous activities”, a project of Union of Nepalese Domestic Workers (UNDW) in Hong Kong. Through a series of activities, e.g. Cantonese class, festival celebration, etc., union members come together and exchanged knowledge and skills, learn about their basic rights – such as proper working hours, monthly wages and holiday provisions. They were encouraged to lobby the government and Nepalese consulate to improve their current situation, so that they can get away from exploitation and poverty.Click here to view other projects.
Promote Women’s Civil Participation
Civil participation has direct and indirect impacts on our livelihood and wellbeing. As citizens and stakeholders of the society, women are not merely passive beneficiaries or recipients of social services, they play an important role in the sustainable development of society. Through active civil participation, women’s voices, needs and rights are promoted, so that they can be more visible to promote positive social changes.
Therefore, HER Fund continued to make grants for numerous projects to support marginalized women such as young mothers, ethnic minority women. Through trainings and talks, the projects empowered marginalized women and enhance their analytical skills in policies and the current situation, so that they are more aware of the need of lobbying and resources allocation from the government for the elimination of gender-based violence, discrimination and poverty.
Teen’s Key – Young Mother’s Club – support young mothers
Accidental pregnancy causes sudden changes in identity and family situation of young mothers. They often face heavy economic pressures and different forms of discrimination. Inadequate social supports, such as child care services, make it difficult for them to either continue their studies or start working. Financial and employment difficulties became vicious cycle which creates huge pressure to the young mothers, making them an ignored and marginalized group in the society. Teen’s Key – Young Mother’s Club are dedicated to alleviate the difficulties of young women and girls, to empower them and to speak for them.
This year, HER Fund made grants for “Research in the situation of Young Mothers in Hong Kong”, a project of Teen’s Key – Young Mother’s Club. The project trained young mothers who then engaged more young girls to conduct questionnaire survey to investigate their struggles with study, work and social discrimination, etc. The project change to "aims to fight for more resources and supports to change their conditions in the long run. Click here to view other projects.
She Built Capacities
HER Fund believes that building capacities of organizations are important to make social changes in the long run. We empower the grassroots and marginalized women leaders of organizations to have better understanding about the organizations’ goals, missions and need, as well as the areas for improvements, so as to build organization capacity to promote gender equality effectively and sustainably.
In view of such need, HER Fund established “HER Hub” in 2017, with the aims to build leadership capacity of our grantee partners by gathering and promoting exchange between stakeholders of different background, such as woman or transgender leaders, and organizations and professionals. The joint effort will improve the life situations of women, transgender people and other marginalized community and bring about social changes.
“HER Hub” consists of 3 parts, includes:
We host workshops and sharing sessions where organizations can interact with the speakers...More＋
We held training sessions for grassroots and marginalized organizations over a period of 6 months...More＋
We connect professional and experienced voluntary mentors with grantee partners to help them...More＋
We host workshops and sharing sessions where organizations can interact with the speakers, and facilitate their reflections on how to improve and enhance development of their organizations, and to increase gender perspective in organizing
On 8th December 2017, HER Hub and Professional Practice and Assessment Centre of the Department of Applied Social Sciences, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University co-organized “Knowledge exchange: Women’s leadership and organizational development in the community”. The event invited Prof. Alfred Chan Cheung-ming, chairperson of the Equal Opportunity Commission, Porticus Asia, scholars and representatives of local grassroots organizations to discuss how capacity building can be promoted and applied in Hong Kong, in order to enable grassroots women to organize themselves to respond to social problems and policy gaps. At the same time, representatives from PwC Hong Kong, members of JJJ Association, Tin Zi Zok Wai and Hong Kong Federation of Asian Domestic Workers Union turned themselves into human books to share their personal experiences on how different forms of capacity development helped empower them, raised their voices, enhanced their social status and encouraged them to participate in the society.
Participant of this HER Hub knowledge exchange understood more about our marginalized community, such as homemakers, migrant domestic workers, sex workers, sexual minority, etc., and the organizations’ need for resources for them to speak out and be involved socially which in return would promote their social status.
We held training sessions for grassroots and marginalized organizations over a period of 6 months. The sessions included topics on project management, learning from monitoring and evaluation, communications and resource mobilization, supported by practical exercises.
In previous interviews with our grantee partners, most of them expressed their need for training in resource development and fundraising. We reckon that to network with more resources, organizations must have good project management, design their service and education and advocacy initiatives according to their mission and vision, and demonstrate their effectiveness through monitoring and evaluation to gain support from the public.
Therefore, The Core provided training on project management to the broad member of four grantee partners, namely Tin Zi Zok Wai, Teen’s key, Virtuous Lady Club and PrideLab. The training helped women leaders to review their mission and vision, and plan their project through the cycle of need assessment, objective setting, programme design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of project effectiveness.
After five training sessions, the participants have better knowledge on need of systematic need and outcome assessment before and after project implementation respectively. There was also increased recognition on need for data on and examples of the social changes achieved by the projects, which would help the public to have better understanding on the importance and the impact of their work. The trainings also promoted exchange between the four grantee partners who actively looked for opportunity for collaboration.
We connect professional and experienced voluntary mentors with grantee partners to help them improve organization operations. The mentors also had a chance to learn about gender issues and work experience from these organizations, which nurtured a mutual learning relationship.
Four grantee partners, namely Tin Zi Zok Wei, Teen’s key, Virtuous lady club and Pridelab, were involved in the intensive training. They were paired up with 1-2 mentors who have project management experiences from business or non-profit sectors. Mentors received training on gender issues at the beginning of the project, and also gained more in-depth understanding of the social issues that the grantee partners worked for during their interactions. They helped the mentees to connect with different resources and broadened their network.
After receiving intensive training, each granter partners developed and implemented tasks related to project management with the support of mentors. After a few months of cooperation, mentors expressed their admiration for grantee partners’ commitment and spirit to promote gender equality in Hong Kong. They also realized the difficulties that the marginalized community faced to promote social changes. For the grantee partners, the Mentorship Programme provided them opportunities to meet people from different backgrounds, get to know how others think about issues of their concern, and learn project management skills from mentors, all of which helped them to carry out their project effectively.
Human Rights Education
HER Fund is honored to be invited by different corporates, organizations and universities to explain our grant-making and capacity building works as well as the situation of local women. We took the opportunities to raise public awareness of gender issues, call for joint effort in promoting gender equality and positive social changes in Hong Kong
HER Fund’s grantee partners are the most neglected communities in the society, so we facilitate them to be more visible and able to voice their concerns and issue to the media. This support can help the public to understand their human rights campaign, or even link them with other stakeholders.
|Programme:||香港電台第二台 - Made in HK李志剛|
|Topic:||The challenges of being working breastfeeding mothers|
Hong Kong ignoring 1.5 million marginalised women and funding for women’s rights, campaigners say
Local Resource Development and Fundraising
This year, we raised HK$634,489 through fundraising activities, individual donations, and charity events organized by different corporations and donors.
Local and International Networking
One of the important work of HER Fund is to connect the local women’s rights movement to the international community so that more people are aware of situation in Hong Kong. Together with global women’s rights movement, we strive for more resources to promote women’s rights movement around the world to improve the situation of women.
HER Fund’s staff and grantee partners participated in the “Un-conference on Gender Justice Movements” on 6 and 7 May 2017, co-organized by Sinking Mun Society and Network for Women in Politics. In the un-conference, we knew more about different gender issues and organizations in Hong Kong.
As a member of Prospera - International Network of Women’s Fund, we are honoured that the Prospera Asia-Pacific Regional Meeting was held in Hong Kong on 12 - 14 June 2017. We discussed collaboration in Asia with MONES from Mongolia, TEWA from Nepal, Korea Foundation for Women, Women’s Fund Asia, Prospera Secretariat, Mama Cash and Global Fund for Women. We also took the opportunity to arrange a meeting between our grantee partners, and Mama Cash and Global Fund for Women, so that our grantee partners have better knowledge in the funding strategies of the two international foundations, and the two international foundations get to know more about the situation and needs of Hong Kong’s women’s rights movement.
On 23 - 26 October 2017, Mandy Cheung, our Chairperson and Judy Kan, our Acting Executive Director attended Prospera – International Network of Women’s Fund Biennial Meeting in Sri Lanka. We shared our experience in local fundraising and learnt about the latest developments in women’s rights movements and resource mobilization around the world.
HER Fund is a member of the following networks:
HER TeamAs of March 31, 2018
Sincerely thanks the following foundations, corporates, organizations, and individual supports to give their support to HER Fund!Download Acknowledgement