History of the Coalition

The Win-Win Coalition grew out of the Win-Win Convening, which was held in Amsterdam in January 2015. That convening was hosted by the Association for Women's Rights in Development (AWID) and Mama Cash an international women's fund based in the Netherlands. The meeting was generously supported by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and served as a follow-up to a 2013 'Innovation and Action' meeting.  

Mama Cash and AWID organized these two convenings to identify opportunities for new linkages, collaborations and impactful actions so as to help shape the growing conversation about the value of “investing in women and girls” and to mobilize greater resources for work to empower women and advance their rights. Both convenings resulted in concrete commitments to leverage and sustain resources for women’s organizations. 

The 2015 Win-Win Convening brought together a small group of trailblazers from the corporate world, foundations, women's funds, women's organizations and individual "bridge-builders" to discuss strategies for cross-sector collaboration to advance women’s rights. Meeting participants presented findings from research that had been conducted following the 2013 meeting to better understand what meaningful cross-sector engagement looked like.

Among other things, participants learned about the results of interviews on corporate sector initiatives around women's empowerment conducted by AWID and Dina Dublon and heard joint presentations from Fundo ELAS, a women’s fund in Brazil, and Instituto Avon Brasil, as well as from Semillas, a women’s fund in Mexico, and Fundacion Banorte on their collaborations. The findings of the Oak Foundation-commissioned report, The Business Case for Women’s Economic Empowerment: An Integrated Approach, were also presented. 

Participants recognized that that there was a need to create new spaces for learning, knowledge production, development of relationships, and mobilization of resources, not only between the sectors represented at the meeting, but also including INGOs, fund advisors, private foundations and the public sector.  The Win-Win Coalition was established to be one of those new spaces, with initial funding from the Oak Foundation and the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and subsequently from the Foundation for a Just Society. 

The Win-Win Coalition officially launched in August 2015 with thirty members, most of whom were participants in the January 2015 Win-Win convening.  In September 2016, the Win-Win Coalition became part of Win-Win Strategies, a new non-profit social enterprise organized in the Netherlands to advance and operationalize the work of the Coalition.

We are extremely grateful to the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Oak Foundation for their vision in funding the work that led to the creation of the Win-Win Coalition. Without their leadership, and that of Foundation for a Just Society, the Win-Win Coalition and Win-Win Strategies would not exist.
— Marissa Wesely, Coordinator, Win-Win Strategies