WVL 2.0 Blog Series: Intersect

brightly coloured illustration of people
Gesiye Souza-Okpofabri

WVL 2.0 Blog Series

Part 2: Intersect

This blog series offers readers a chance to travel around the world to witness the work of women’s funds in action. As implementers of Canada’s Women Voice and Leadership program, women’s funds are once again demonstrating a strategic feminist edge when it comes to resourcing women’s rights and LBTQI+ organizations. This series uncovers what that work looks like up close. 

In Part One, we explored the innovative work of Women Fund Tanzania Trust. In this installment, we shift perspectives, hearing from an organization about what it is like to be resourced through a women’s fund.

Sarah-Anne Gresham, co-founder of Intersect, a queer advocacy-based collective in Antigua and Barbuda shared how they are re-imagining a world where people are free to live and love in societies where they are cared for and cherished. Intersect uses storytelling and visual arts to support ‘Artivism’, a form of digital activism.

Pride by Lucia Murray

While focusing on digital/cyber-feminist activism to challenge multiple forms of oppression, Intersect is committed to centring the experiences and needs of queer, trans, and non-binary people and those with disabilities who are Black, Indigenous, and identify as people of colour. Their efforts include movement building through various means such as public rallies, educational resources, and collaboration with local gender justice organizations. Currently, their primary focus is on curating Caribbean feminist stories and art as a way to inspire social change across the region. 

Sarah-Anne shares her definition of movement building and highlights some of Intersect’s most recent and ongoing work:

Intersect is a grantee partner under the Women’s Voice and Leadership – Caribbean (WVL-Caribbean) project. Implemented by the Equality Fund in partnership with the Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice (Astraea), it aims to advance women’s rights and gender equality in eight Caribbean Community (CARICOM) member states, including: Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, Jamaica, Belize, Guyana, Saint Lucia, and Suriname. 

Implementing WVL-Caribbean through a women’s fund has resulted in Intersect’s thriving success, especially for a nascent, previously unregistered organization with no previous history of funding. These factors are typically barriers to accessing many donor funding opportunities. Intersect and the Equality Fund’s trust-based relationship is in part due to the feminist approach to risk adopted by women’s funds in which they consider the lived experience and the political knowledge that comes from supporting feminist, rights-based work as an asset, not a liability.  

Intersect’s involvement with WVL-Caribbean has resulted in better organizational management and sustainability. Through their unique approach to activism, the organization demonstrates how systems of power such as racism, sexism, colonialism, patriarchy, capitalism, and queerphobia intersect to compound people’s experiences with discrimination and oppression. The result is an enhanced understanding by the general public about how systems of oppression impact people differently according to their race, class, ability, sexuality or other characteristics. 

Sarah-Anne reflects on the programmatic tools employed by Intersect and the ways in which bringing an intersectional lens to Intersect’s work can tackle injustice:

As a result of adopting a feminist approach to risk, women’s funds significantly contribute to the advancement of movement building and resource mobilization. For Intersect, flexible funding through a women’s fund means the organization is better positioned to meet the needs of diverse groups in crisis. As Sarah-Anne explains:

We want to be able to reach more people that we haven’t been able to get in touch with before. We want to be in community with more Indigenous Caribbean women. We want to be in a community with more working-class people. We want to foster a greater sense of community with people with disabilities.

Up next… Part Three of our series

In the final installment of our series, we will travel to Ukraine to hear directly from the leaders of the Ukrainian Women’s Fund. Through interviews, video, and powerful images, we will experience the organization’s essential work amid conflict and learn how its support for the community reaches far beyond traditional humanitarian aid. It’s a window into the role of women’s funds in crisis and conflict settings—not only in Ukraine, but across the globe. Stay tuned.

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