Women’s History Month is an annual celebration of women’s achievements. In addition to highlighting women’s historical contributions to science, the arts, engineering and more, Women’s History Month emphasizes the imperative to promote women’s equal access to opportunity and recognize women’s accomplishments.
Whilst many companies are on the journey of addressing gender equality and women’s development in their organization, it is less common for companies to empower and provide opportunities to women and girls outside of their own workforce.
Companies can provide education and empowerment opportunities to women through promotional campaigns, charitable partnerships, and external development programs.
At SocialMarks, we analyze the work undertaken by companies through unique and comprehensive assessments within Brand and Community. We assess the duration, scale, outcomes, and level of innovation of companies’ initiatives – and analyze the overall social impact they provide.
Reflecting on the ways in which companies can advance gender equality beyond their organization, we have looked at some of the most effective campaigns, partnerships and development courses below.
Empowering women through grants – Coca-Cola:
Coca-Cola’s main philanthropic arm, the Coca-Cola Foundation, reaches communities around the world through its grants. In 2021, the Foundation supported over 350 different programs by awarding grants to various organizations. One of the Coca-Cola Foundation’s community priorities is Women’s Empowerment. For example, the Foundation’s $100,000 grant to the National Coalition of 100 Black Women Inc will go towards an economic empowerment program aiming to increase the self-confidence and financial literacy of 48,000 Black women and girls in the United States.
Challenging stereotypes through campaigns – Walgreens Boots Alliance:
Walgreens Boots Alliance’s No7 Beauty Company launched its impressive Unstoppable Together campaign in 2021. The multi-year campaign, which seeks to challenge stereotypes and encourage women to realize their potential, is active in both the US and UK. The campaign highlights the continuing gender pay gap, but also celebrates the increase of CEOs who are women. In response to the pandemic impacting women’s employment, the Unstoppable Together campaign also included a free virtual Job Summit and free networking, interview, and career coaching sessions (worth $100,000).
Encouraging girls in STEM through development programs – Intel Corp:
The Intel Foundation has invested $4.65 million in grants since 2017, with the aim of providing middle school girls and their families with experiences in STEM. In line with these philanthropic efforts, the Foundation partnered with others on the Million Girls Moonshot (MGM) in 2021. Within a year, MGM reached 160,000 girls across the US through 21,000 STEM programs and 612 STEM partnerships. 250 Intel employees also volunteered 2,800 hours with MGM, encouraging girls’ interest in STEM.
Gender equality is an issue which companies must address within their organization, but also externally through development courses, partnerships, volunteering and campaigns, as in the above examples. SocialMarks can help you determine how to best improve your efforts towards gender equality and women’s empowerment – both within your company and in the wider community.