Washington Area Women's Foundation

Washington Area Women's Foundation is a results-oriented, creative catalyst for social change. We believe in the promise and value of every women and girl in the Washington area. We know that we we achieve our full potential, our entire region benefits. We envision the Washington metro area as a model community where every women and girl is on the path to prosperity. That is why we are using our deep insight into the needs of women and girls to collect, direct, and leverage resources to three core areas: financial education and wealth creation, jobs with benefits, career pathways and family sustaining wages; and high-quality early care and education. By supporting the most effective organiza...
Jun 7, 2013

Message from the President: Celebrating All Graduates

What’s your favorite part of graduation season? Is it the celebration of years of hard work coming to fruition? Is it the hopefulness of the future? The excitement of planning for tomorrow? For many nontraditional students in the greater Washington metro region, it’s about all that and so much more.

Adult learners are completing basic education, job training, and higher education programs in growing numbers, and are often doing so while caring for children, working long hours, and struggling to make ends meet, all in the hopes of a more economically secure and fulfilling life for themselves and their families.

They’re graduating from programs like So Others Might Eat’s Center for Employment Training. A record 60 students celebrated completing the program last month. There are also the students who graduated from Montgomery College’s apartment maintenance technician program, a class that included women for the first time, thanks to funding from the Foundation. And at the end of July, Year Up will hold a ceremony for students who have completed the training part of their program and are off to information technology internships across the region. All of these programs receive support from The Women’s Foundation.

Congratulations to the graduates of these and other programs across the region! Their determination, hard work and sacrifice are truly awe inspiring and we look forward to seeing what the future holds for them and their families.


Nicky Goren

Mar 12, 2013

Women's Foundation Awards $805,000 in Grants to 23 Local Nonprofits

Thank you for your continued support and interest in Washington Area Women’s Foundation’s Stepping Stones Initiative.  Together, we are working to build the economic security of low-income, women-headed families by focusing resources on three areas: access to high-quality early care and education; jobs with benefits, career pathways, and family-sustaining wages; and financial education and asset building.

In December 2012, The Women’s Foundation awarded grants totaling $805,000 to 23 nonprofits whose work is improving the economic security of low-income women in the Washington metropolitan area. The grants will touch the lives of 5,000 women and children who are living in poverty.

“By investing in effective nonprofits working in these areas, we’re helping our region’s most vulnerable families access the resources they need to thrive,” said Nicky Goren, president of The Women’s Foundation.  “We have the potential to end poverty in the DC metro area by transforming the role economically disadvantaged women and their families play in our economic future.”

Ten of the nonprofits received funding through the Foundation’s Early Care and Education Funders Collaborative (ECEFC), a partnership between national and local private foundations, corporate funders and family foundations to increase access to quality early care and education in the DC metro area. The Grantee Partners are:

  • AppleTree Institute for Education Innovation
  • CentroNía
  • Fairfax Futures
  • Hopkins House
  • Mission: Readiness
  • National Black Child Development Institute
  • Prince George’s Child Resource Center
  • Ready at Five
  • Voices for Virginia’s Children
  • Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts

The remaining nonprofits were funded for their work in financial education, workforce development and jobs. They were chosen because of their focus on giving women and their families the tools they need to increase their assets and obtain jobs with family-sustaining wages and benefits. Those Grantee Partners are:

  • Academy of Hope
  • Capital Area Asset Builders
  • CASA de Maryland Multicultural Center
  • Goodwill of Greater Washington
  • Greater Washington Workforce Development Collaborative
  • Latino Economic Development Center
  • Montgomery College Foundation
  • Nonprofit Roundtable of Greater Washington’s Capital Area Foreclosure Network
  • Northern Virginia Family Service
  • Prince George’s Community College Foundation
  • So Others Might Eat (SOME)
  • The Training Source, Inc.
  • Year Up

In the coming months we hope to expand our grantmaking strategy to address the critical needs of girls and young women as we continue to invest in programs breaking the cycle of poverty. 

Dec 13, 2012

The Path to Prosperity

You are a part of a community that has come together because we believe that every woman and girl should have the opportunity to fulfill her dreams and to reach her full potential.


Charlotte Perret, a generous donor, said, “The act of writing a check may be a small act compared to the acts of those on the ground. But… the ability of the foundation to create social change can only happen when we help make that possible.”


Your generosity helps us realize our goals and support the over 260,000 women and girls living in poverty in our region.  With your help this year, we will increase our grant making, update our groundbreaking research on the needs of our region’s women and girls, share best practices for workforce development programs, and launch a girls grant making strategy that will invest in programs breaking the cycle of poverty so women and girls in this community have access to the resources they need to get on the path to prosperity.


Women like Okema Wade who bravely shared her story with us. Okema was a jobless, single mom who signed herself up for a job training program so that she could obtain the necessary skills to land a better job.


“This journey… would not have been possible without inner determination to make a better life for myself and my family, programs like So Others Might Eat’s Center for Employment Training, child care services, transitional housing and a host of other support services that helped along the way. These programs exist because organizations like The Women’s Foundation and people like you see how the resources they provide can change lives and give families a brighter future.”


Okema was recently promoted and now serves as the Employment Retention Specialist at So Others Might Eat's Center for Employment Training. This is great news, not just for Okema and her daughters, but also for the women who will go through the program with the help of someone who has been in their shoes and now has a brighter future.  Okema is also exploring her options for taking classes at a local college with the goal of obtaining a degree.


Thank you for supporting our vision of standing together so she can stand on her own. Together we will build a community in which all women and girls have the resources they need to thrive. 

An anonymous donor will match all new monthly recurring donations, but only if 75% of donors upgrade to a recurring donation today.
Terms and conditions apply.
Make a monthly recurring donation on your credit card. You can cancel at any time.
Make a donation in honor or memory of:
What kind of card would you like to send?
How much would you like to donate?
gift Make this donation a gift, in honor of, or in memory of someone?

Reviews of Washington Area Women's Foundation

Great Nonprofits
Read and write reviews about Washington Area Women's Foundation on GreatNonProfits.org.