Taso Foundation – Georgia
TASO Foundation (TF) is the national women’s fund transformed from the Women’s Program of Open Society Georgia Foundation (1998-2006). Since 2007, TF operates independently with the mission Women’s and Girls’ Empowerment for Human Rights, Equality, Social Justice and Peace in Georgia. We see the problem of social and political passiveness in the majority of the population, especially in rural areas, which allows for the pretence of superficial democracy against the background of poverty of the majority, ethnically coloured conflicts and high unemployment. This impacts mainly rurally based people who suffer from the many unsolved bloody conflicts of the 1990’s and the war with Russia in 2008. The official number of internally displaced people is 258,595 but unofficially is estimated to be up to 500,000. This figure is included in 70% of the conflict – affected population of Georgia (the official figure of 3,729,500 still experience vulnerability of different kinds while 10% live in extreme poverty.
Working in rural Georgia since 2004, and focused on the conflict affected villages and settlements of internally displaced people since 2008, we know the huge distance between the state legislation on Human Rights/WHRs and its implementation in poor environments where people (mostly women as always and everywhere) struggle for survival. Every violation of HR’s, ranging from direct and severe violence to inefficiency of spending of the Village Program funds, is going on locally and it is only local people themselves that can make changes for the better. Therefore, TF invests in people, in women and girls, but also welcome to our programs men who are honest and motivated. We strengthen communities with knowledge and education, skills development, grant-giving and continuous consulting and coaching, but all starts with confidence building. Once people are mobilized, they see the complexity of the problems they face, they are able to analyse and respond with appropriate social activism.
TF believes in steady, continuous work and we build the programs on the results already achieved and have trust in the abilities of our grantee partners. TF practices different types of activities suitable for individual and complex circumstances: competition-based grant making; negotiation grants for experienced and trustworthy partners; operational activities; mixed activities. The library and archives of the Memory Research Centre at Taso Foundation are open for researchers, students and women’s movement activists. We act as a documentary maker (since 2001) and publisher (since 2004). In the years from 2007 to 2016 (by January, 2016) TF made 352 grants; total amount of grants made: which is the equivalent of US$ 600,526.
TF is member of key international networks and is most active in the Foundations for Peace Network (www.foundationsforpeace.org/) and International Network of Women’s Funds (www.inwf.org).
Address: 15 Rezo Tabukashvili Str.; 0108, Tbilisi, Georgia