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New funding for womens’ and girls’ initiatives in the North

17 June 2020

For Immediate Release

IQALUIT – MakeWay (formerly Tides Canada) and the Canadian Women’s Foundation have launched a new strategic grantmaking program in service of women and girls in Canada’s territories and Inuit regions. With new gendered challenges emerging from the COVID-19 pandemic, including possible increases in violence against women, empowerment of women and girls in the North is imperative.

This program will support northern women and girls in their efforts to make positive change in their communities. It will amplify and accelerate community-driven initiatives and promote shared learning to reduce domestic violence, bolster Indigenous culture and traditions, break down barriers to Indigenous health and wellness, and address other challenges.

Program priorities include:

  • Uplifting women’s important role in family and community by reclaiming and honouring Indigenous cultures and traditions.
  • Reconciling positive gender relationships within family and community as a pathway to end violence.
  • Expanding culturally relevant childcare services.
  • Promoting women’s and girl’s programming led by Indigenous health and wellness institutions.

“This new partnership recognizes the interconnectivity and interdependence of healthy communities, sustainable livelihoods, and environmental integrity—and the integral role that women and girls hold across these areas,” said Joanna Kerr, CEO, MakeWay.

“Northern women and girls are doing incredible things in their communities,” said Paulette Senior, CEO, Canadian Women’s Foundation. “Even as they face challenges and barriers, they are tireless innovators and changemakers. There’s no question: when they thrive, entire families and communities thrive. We’re excited to provide supports and follow where they lead.”

Leading this partnership initiative is Delma Autut, Senior Associate, Community Initiatives, based in Iqaluit, Nunavut. Autut will build meaningful partnerships with northern communitieDelma Aututs, leaders, and organizations as part of MakeWay’s team in the North.

“I look forward to working with my colleagues from both MakeWay and the Canadian Women’s Foundation to help with needs in our communities. I’m eager be learn about the priorities of women and girls acrossthe North to shape this program in a way that will give them the spotlight and let them shine,” said Autut.

Programming will build on MakeWay’s successful 10-year track record and established local presence in the North. Autut will work with her team and a network of northern advisors to develop the grantmaking program, which will aim to be flexible, responsive, and attuned to northern ways of doing things just as the rest of MakeWay’s granting programs are.

About Canadian Women’s Foundation

The Canadian Women’s Foundation is Canada’s public foundation for women and girls. The Foundation funds programs across Canada, prioritizing communities where the need is greatest addressing urgent issues including gender-based violence, economic security, girls’ empowerment, and inclusive leadership.

About MakeWay

MakeWay is a national charity and public foundation with a goal to enable nature and communities to thrive together. We do this by building partnerships, providing solutions, grants, and services for the charitable sector across the country.

Media Inquiries

Alison Henning,

Director, Communications, MakeWay


Program Inquiries

Steve Ellis,

North Program Lead, MakeWay,

Yellowknife, NWT


Alison Henning
(236) 317-2778