The Global Fund for Children

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The Global Fund for Children
Founded 1994
Founder Maya Ajmera
Type Non-governmental organization
Area served
78 countries
Mission to transform the lives of the world’s most vulnerable children by making small grants to innovative community-based organizations

The Global Fund for Children (GFC) is a Washington, DC-based nonprofit organization whose mission is to transform the lives of the world’s most vulnerable children. GFC pursues this mission by making small grants to innovative community-based organizations that provide services and programs for children that government and large aid organizations often do not reach.[1]


The Global Fund for Children was established in 1994 and made its first grants with the royalties from its children’s book publishing venture. Since then, GFC’s grantmaking capacity has grown dramatically. To date, GFC has awarded over $34 million in grants to more than 600 organizations in 78 countries, serving more than 9 million children worldwide.[2]


The Global Fund for Children uses a venture philanthropy approach [3] to address issues affecting extremely vulnerable populations of children, including trafficked children, refugees, and child laborers.[4]

GFC strategically invests in grassroots organizations and helps them to grow and become sustainable resources in their communities. The organization intentionally scouts out and supports small, emerging nonprofits that do not have other sources of funding—in 2013, GFC was the first US-based institutional funder for 83 percent of its new grantees. On average, GFC’s grantee partners grow threefold in size and reach during their partnership with GFC, expanding their capacity to reach more children in need.[5]

In a 2014 survey of GFC grantee partners, 91 percent of respondents agreed that GFC stands apart from other funders because GFC contributes to its partners’ long-term sustainability.[6]

Strategic Partnerships[edit]

Nike Foundation - Grassroots Girls Initiative The Global Fund for Children is part of the Nike Grassroots Girls Initiative, focusing on girls' education. Other partners in the initiative include American Jewish World Service, EMPower-The Emerging Markets Foundation, Firelight Foundation, Global Fund for Women and Mama Cash.[7]

Clinton Global Initiative - U8 The Global Fund for Children launched its Under-8 Initiative (U8) at the Clinton Global Initiative in 2007. Through this initiative, GFC committed $10 million to programs worldwide that support early childhood education and development for children under age 8.[8]

MacArthur Digital Media Award In 2008, The Global Fund for Children was selected as a winner of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation's Digital Media and Learning Competition. GFC's project, "Using Digital Technology to Extend Grassroots Knowledge," works to enable the organization to share and promote the knowledge and best practices of its grantee partners.[9]

Other GFC strategic partnerships include Goldman Sachs, Credit Suisse, Johnson & Johnson, Howard G. Buffett Foundation, Oak Foundation, GoodWeave, Feizy Rugs, and Tea Collection[10]


In 2012, the Financial Times selected The Global Fund for Children as its Seasonal Appeal winner. GFC was profiled in a series of online and print articles from November 2012 through January 2013 and as a result raised $4.89 million for GFC programs.[11]

The Global Fund for Children has also appeared in: The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, NPR, and Huffington Post.[12] Maya Ajmera, GFC founder, has been profiled by: CNN, The Oprah Winfrey Show, Financial Times, and NPR.[13]

Children's books[edit]

Global Fund for Children books aim to integrate children’s perspectives and inspire young readers to explore diverse cultures and global understanding. The GFC book collection includes more than 30 full-color books for children from infancy to adolescence. Proceeds from book purchases help support GFC programs.[14]

Awards: Jane Addams Peace Association, American Library Association, International Reading Association, Oprah’s Book Club (Kids Reading List), Bank Street College of Education, National Council for the Social Studies, Cooperative Children’s Book Center, Children’s Book Council.


The Global Fund for Children has invested in two documentary films that have done very well in international film festivals:

War Child, a 2008 documentary about former Sudanese child soldier Emmanuel Jal, won the audience choice award at the Tribeca film festival [1].

Journey of a Red Fridge tells the story of Hari Rai, a child porter who carries a red Coca-Cola refrigerator through the Himalayan mountains. Filmed by Lunam Docs, a Serbian independent documentary production duo - Lucian and Natasa Muntean - who specialize in telling the stories of child laborers.


External links[edit]