Donation will accelerate a vision to end, within a generation, the suffering caused by obstetric fistula
SAN JOSE, CALIFORNIA – May 23, 2023 – Fistula Foundation, the global leader in obstetric fistula treatment, announced today that it has received a $15 million gift from philanthropist MacKenzie Scott. This gift—the largest single donation in the organization’s history—will fuel the Foundation’s five-year strategic plan to provide 80,000 life-changing surgeries to women in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia who have been left incontinent through childbirth. The announcement comes on International Day to End Obstetric Fistula, a United Nations–sponsored event that takes place each year on May 23.
Under the new strategic plan, the Foundation is accelerating implementation of In It to End It, a visionary project to eradicate the suffering caused by fistula in all countries where the condition persists today. At the center of the plan is a drive to expand the Fistula Foundation Treatment Network (FFTN) model to additional countries. Through this model, Fistula Foundation builds networks of care with the goal of connecting all women in all parts of a country with timely, high-quality care.
“This donation is a milestone without precedent for our team, and for our dedicated partners that work every day to heal women with devastating childbirth injuries,” said Kate Grant, CEO of Fistula Foundation. “Our hearts burst with gratitude for Ms. Scott’s gift. Because of her generosity, we have a vital down payment on our plan to end—within a generation—the suffering caused by fistula.”
With Scott’s gift serving as a key catalyst, Fistula Foundation is undertaking a $110 million, five-year plan that includes ambitious impact goals. From 2009 to 2022, the Foundation supported more than 75,000 surgeries for women in need. Under the new plan, it will exceed that total—by supporting a projected 80,000 surgeries—in just five years. In addition, it will extend its FFTN model to five new countries. It will also add 40-plus surgery and outreach organizations to its global network of Fistula Foundation Partners.
The gift, which comes without restriction, follows an extensive process of due diligence by advisors to Scott. Most recipients of Scott’s philanthropy have been organizations that serve U.S. populations. Fistula Foundation is among a relatively small number of recipients that pursue work that focuses entirely in developing countries.
“Ms. Scott is pioneering a revolution in philanthropy,” Grant said. “By providing her gift without bureaucratic strings, she’s placed her trust in us. We won’t let her, or the women we are in business to help, down. We are in it to end it, and to ensure that no woman is left behind.”
For more information on the Fistula Foundation Strategic Plan 2023–2027, click here.
Published on May 23, 2023