As Women Win started funding with the work of local, grassroot organisations that implemented sports programmes with girls, it became evident and urgent to create and establish safeguarding protection and mechanisms, specifically designed to meet the needs and protect adolescent girls. Together with UNICEF, the Australian government, and the NAZ Foundation in India, we created protocols and guidelines around child protection, safeguarding, and gender inclusion. In addition, in 2007 we supported 20 implementing partners in 15 countries, including Palestine, Bangladesh and Morocco, impacting the lives of over 7,000 adolescent girls and young women.
Women Win was built upon the guiding principle of empowering and supporting the work of local partners – the true experts. Women Win resource their work to address gender-based violence; to advance access to sexual and reproductive health and rights for adolescent girls and young women in their communities; and to design and implement programmes that build adolescent girls’ and young women’s economic resilience. In 2011 we joined forces with Standard Chartered Bank to design and implement Goal, a global programme to tackle inequality and promote economic inclusion through sport, play and life skills education. Between 2006 and 2018, the programme reached more than 480,000 adolescent girls and young women.
Despite the amazing work on the ground, it had become apparent that, once adolescent girls and young women grow older, a new threat looms: the threat to their economic rights. At the same time, this was a moment of increased awareness and investment from the private sector in women’s economic empowerment programmes and further coordination was needed. The Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, together with other actors, launched the Win-Wiin Coalition, a forum in which companies and women’s funds/rights organisations could better strategies and cooperate. The Coalition evolved into a formal organisation called Win-Win Strategies, headed by Marissa Wesley as the CEO and Maria Bobenrieth as COO.