Ariadne’s Thread – June 2023

Ariadne’s Thread – June 2023
June 14, 2023 Jana Stardelova

June 2023

Ariadne’s Thread is a monthly update of events, briefings and research for social change and human rights funders. 

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Ariadne News & Events

Ariadne and HRFN Informal Gathering in London, 20 June: Don’t miss this informal gathering opportunity for London-based funders. Please join us for a meet-up at Mercato Metropolitano in Elephant & Castle between 6:30-8:30 pm. There’s no formal agenda; this is just a chance to enjoy a summer evening catching up with peers outside of a conference setting. Please let us know if you’re coming by RSVPing here, by Monday, 19 June. We hope to see you there!

Ariadne member session: Somatic healing of racialised trauma – 26th June at 13:00-14:30 CEST/12:00-13:30 BST. In this session, you’ll have the opportunity to explore basic somatic tools for engaging with issues of racism that you can take away and continue to work with in your life and work. The session is open to anyone and will have multi-racial facilitation by Sarah Diedro Jordão, Nishma Jethwa & Tanya Hubbard. We encourage anyone who is interested in building their somatic tools for engaging in anti-racist work to attend. Registration information is available on our Members only portal.

Funders’ lunchtime learning sessions with the European AI & Society Fund:

1. What is ChatGPT and why does it matter? June 20th, 1 pm CET: A conversation with a chatbot resembling a human interaction is the new reality in everyday situations. Seemingly well-articulated answers are often times plausible sounding but incorrect information. For users, it is becoming increasingly hard to spot misinformation in these interactions. Unfortunately, the datasets that these chatbots are trained on are also biased, and their environmental cost is estimated to be high. This session will be presented by Daniel Leufer (Senior Policy Analyst at Access Now). Find the registration link here.

2. ‘Will predictive systems profile you as a criminal?’ July 4th, 1 pm CET: The learning session ‘Will predictive systems profile you as a criminal?’ will be presented by Griff Ferris (Senior Legal and Policy Officer at Fair Trials). Details to register are available on our Members only portal.

Article: ‘Futures literacy, or how we think about tomorrow today’: Philea’s Hanna Stähle, Head of Foresight and Innovation, reflects on Ariadne’s ‘2033’ Annual member meeting in Berlin, 2023 that was devoted to imagining alternative futures. Click here to access the article.

Healing Solidarity’s Senior Leader Sessions – next session is on June 27th:
Recognising the central importance of leadership in enabling culture and systems change in our sector, Ariadne is organising a special event for the senior leadership of European foundations to have an honest and supportive conversation about your institutions’ anti-racist work and practices.
Healing Solidarity’s inter-racial team will facilitate 90-minute workshops on June 27th, July 25th & September 26th. Registration information is available on our Members only portal.

Invitation to the session ‘Cultivating the Funding Conditions for Narrative Power at Scale’ – July 6th, 3 PM CET. In this conversation, Mandy Van Deven and James Savage, co-moderators of Ariadne’s Communications, Narrative, and Culture Change community will share a new vision for funders who are curious to explore the steps we can all take to more effectively resource communications, narrative, and culture change strategies that build momentum for durable wins across issues, identities, and borders. Register via our Members only portal.

Ariadne’s Membership Portal:
Last Threads:
1. Roma in the News, June 2-9, 2023
2. Ireland’s Historic Regularisation – A Conversation with Neil Bruton (MRCI) and Imelda Morano (Justice for the Undocumented), 28 June
3. Ariadne and HRFN Informal Gathering in London, 20 June
4. How racial profiling within the EU’s free travel zone harms asylum seekers and migrants – by Riley Sparks, in The New Humanitarian

Log in to join the diverse communities, connect and collaborate with other funders on Ariadne’s Membership portal!
P.S We are still on the lookout for new co-moderators for some of our communities. Get in contact with us to learn more about the role.
Do you have a colleague that doesn’t yet have access to the portal? They can sign up here. Need assistance? Take a look at our guide or email

All these resources and more can be found on Ariadne’s website and Member-only portal.


New Research, Articles and Judgements

Annual Report: Media Defence – 2022 annual report: The year 2022 has been marked by a worrying decline in press freedom. In response to their work, journalists around the world have faced legal harassment, intimidation, and other forms of persecution by those seeking to silence them. Over the last couple of years, journalists have been targeted in ways ranging from criminal charges to tax fraud allegations, from blocking content to violence or imprisonment. Learn more and access the report here.

Toolkit: FRIDA – Feminist Leadership Toolkit for LGBTQI+ organisers in WESCA: FRIDA has committed to strengthening the LGBTQI+ movement in West, East, Southern, and Central Africa (WESCA), by resourcing and accompanying young activists and their organisations to co-create a powerful African feminist future. This Toolkit is a result of their commitment and was created for young, feminist organisers from WESCA who are at the forefront of their movements, tirelessly working towards radical systemic change for LGBTQI+ people in their communities.

Report: Freedom House – Nations in Transit 2023 report: Democracy scores declined in 11 of the 29 countries examined in this year’s report. At the same time, civic activists and democratic leaders continued to strive for better governance across the region. Read the key findings and access the report here.

Report: CAF – UK Giving report 2023: The UK Giving Report tells the story of giving in 2022 – the UK public’s generosity in response to the invasion of Ukraine in the first half of the year and of the impact of the subsequent cost-of-living crisis. And, it suggests that levels of some charitable activity remain suppressed from the pandemic. Learn more.

Report: EIGE – Violence against women in the Western Balkans and Türkiye: EIGE’s new report ‘Strengthening data systems on violence against women in the Western Balkans and Türkiye’ provides guidance for combatting violence against women. The report gives insights on the current state of data collection and how it could be improved. It is not only a call to action for data experts in the aforementioned region, but for any country seeking to strengthen data collection methodologies and comply with international standards to help prevent violence against women.

Research: WINGS – Philanthropy for Gender Equity: Working on raising awareness and developing concrete action for gender equity in the philanthropic sector. WINGS has commissioned preliminary research to collect data and propose actions to foster philanthropy for gender equity within their community. Their objective has been to map learning and best practices toward gender equity among WINGS members.

Research: ILGA-Europe – Rainbow Map and Index: ILGA-Europe launched the 2023 version of the Rainbow Map and Index, examining the laws and policies in European countries. Trans and intersex rights at the forefront of positive change for LGBTI people in Europe, this year’s Rainbow Map finds. While the public discourse is becoming more polarised and violent, particularly against trans people, political determination to advance LGBTI rights is paying off. The largest gains on the Map are for countries that introduced legal gender recognition (LGR) using a self-determination model. Find out your country score and ranking.

Survey: International Press Institute (IPI) & Faktograf – Harassment of fact-checking media outlets in Europe: Survey finds that 90% of 41 fact-checking outlets in 28 European countries have been the target of online harassment and smear campaigns. Learn more.

Report: USC Annenberg Norman Lear Center – 20 Years of Research on the Power of Entertainment to Support Narrative Change: As philanthropy’s interest in the power of narratives to advance social justice grows, funders often ask: how can we know if our strategies are working? This new report in an ongoing series by the USC Annenberg Norman Lear Center Media Impact Project synthesises 20 years of research to identify a framework for assessing the impact of entertainment-driven efforts. Find out more.

Report: Protecting Rights at Borders: New data on pushback practices confirm how widespread rights violations are at EU borders. In the first quarter of 2023, 10,691 people experienced pushbacks at European borders. This number remains nevertheless an underrepresentation, as many pushbacks go undocumented. The latest report from PRAB, the Protecting Rights at Borders Initiative outlines rights violations recorded.


Blogs and Other Sites of Interest

The French Institute for Civil Society Organisations, Maecenata Foundation, the Institute for Social Research, and le Mouvement associatif organised a webinar “CSOs and democracy in Europe” on the 14th of April 2023. Find the replay of the webinar here. The Institute also presented a collaborative digital library during its webinar, referencing to this day 650 publications on civil society in Europe. This library aims at gathering a wide array of academic and non-academic references and structuring a knowledge-based repertoire on CSOs’ contribution to democracy in Europe. It is also collaborative, hence encouraging the contribution of both researchers and civil society actors across Europe. To surf on our digital library, click here. To contribute to the digital library and help construct a better knowledge of civil society organisations access this form.

Report: Empower – Moving the Needle: Making the Case for Youth Protagonism: This report by aims to support a stronger case for mainstreaming youth leadership: case studies of organisations and initiatives that have implemented this approach, and resources for organisations and supporters to use in their programming and advocacy. The report is a compilation of existing literature on youth leadership-focused approaches and explores some examples and learnings from organisations that have adopted this approach. Read more.

Article: How racial profiling within the EU’s free travel zone harms asylum seekers and migrants: ‘There are no borders, except for Black people and Arabs.’ Using legally dubious emergency measures, some EU states have reintroduced internal border controls to crack down on migration. Access the article here.

Trans Rights Map: Transgender Europe – TGEU launched the latest version of their Trans Rights Index and Map. According to the research, the past 12 months saw an increase in trans rights in the region on the whole, however, the risk of regression and anti-trans backlash is pressing at the same time. Some countries lost points in 2023 and are in danger of further regression. Access the interactive map.

Five considerations for humanitarians before designing & adopting chatbots: In this article you can learn more about the key learnings for humanitarian organisations based on the research done by The Engine Room that investigates the types of chatbots used by humanitarian and civil society organisations in more than 10 countries, including Ukraine, Ecuador, Kazakhstan and Libya. Access it here.

Article: Feminists Work for Men and Boys Too: In this article, Latanya Mapp Frett, president and CEO of Global Fund for Women, shares an excerpt on gender equality for males in Lesotho from her latest book titled ‘The Everyday Feminist: The Key to Sustainable Social Impact Driving Movements We Need Now More than Ever’.

Framework for Meaningful Engagement: The European Center for Not-for-Profit Law (ECNL) has developed a practical framework for meaningful engagement of civil society, affected communities and other external stakeholders in the context of human rights impact assessments of AI systems. This framework looks at questions such as – What makes engagement meaningful? What does a trustworthy engagement process look like?

Looking back from 2040: Future activism interviews: ILGA-Europe asked nine LGBTI activists to project themselves into 2040 and imagine different futures for the LGBTI movement across Europe and Central Asia: How did we get better at mobilising with others on social justice issues? The interviews are published in a zine that, according to the publishers, ‘doesn’t intend or aspire to present the future, but rather to present a snapshot and selection of possible futures without any demand that we fix on one. It’s the act of multiple imaginings that matters’. Download a copy of the zine.

Working together to shift power safely: Tom Burke, the author of a new guide on safeguarding and participatory grant-making, shares why two existing funder collaborations (Funder Safeguarding Collaborative and Participatory Grantmaking Community) came together to explore the intersection between their areas of focus. Read the blog here.

The Emerging Roles of Collective Care for Global Feminist Movements: In this blog the Urgent Action Fund Asia and Pacific – UAFANP asked those who compiled the “How Can We Ground Ourselves in Care and Dance Our Revolution?” research to provide a deeper understanding of the importance of collective care in the feminist space.

Podcast: Imprisoned for 50p – are anti-social behaviour rules out of order? Should asking for 50p or feeding pigeons land you in prison? This episode of the Transform Justice podcast discusses anti-social behaviour injunctions, and the harsh outcomes that can occur when they are breached. The hosts are joined by Dr Rona Epstein, researcher at Coventry Law School, and James Stark, barrister. They share cases which resulted in disproportionately severe punishment, and question current approaches to anti-social behaviour. Listen here.

Do you have a great blog post, case study, or podcast you’d like to contribute? We would love to feature it. Contact us.


Report: Environmental Funding by European Foundations – Philea: Philea launched the 6th edition of its mapping on environmental philanthropy. It is the most comprehensive report that has ever been published on environmental philanthropy across Europe. Key findings include: The 126 foundations studied made 8,518 environmental grants in 2021, worth a combined €1.6 billion. This is more than double the value of the grants analysed in the previous edition of this research.

Making the case for unrestricted funding – IVAR: IVAR published a new briefing that summarises key points from research to help grantmakers and Boards consider and make the case for unrestricted funding. Access it here.

Case study on Climate strategies – Esmée Fairbairn Foundation: Check out this article in which Esmée Fairbairn Foundation’s CEO, Caroline Mason, spoke to Active Philanthropy and shared Esmée’s experience about changing their approach to investment to be more sustainable as part of the foundation’s role to address the causes and impacts of climate change.

The art of grantmaking: In Hyperallergic, Ford Foundation’s Rocío Aranda-Alvarado and Lane Harwell suggest nine ways for philanthropies to strengthen their support for artists and ensure they are compensated for their essential work.

Exploring Barriers to Funding and Support Experienced by Marginalised Community Businesses: In a report commissioned by Power to Change, Spark Insights and Locality explore barriers to funding and support experienced by marginalised community businesses. Read more.

Arts and Culture at the Core of Philanthropy – Philea: The second volume of Philea’s study into European funding in the field of arts and culture. As multiple crises have unfolded in recent years, the arts and culture sector has been among the most damaged financially, and its structural fragilities have significantly deteriorated. Find the key findings here.

Podcast: The role of data and evidence in advancing gender equity – A conversation with funders: The global community has made huge strides in achieving gender equity. But there’s still a long way to go: data shows that women and girls still experience poverty at higher levels than men and there is still a notable discrepancy between the number of men and women in leadership positions. This podcast’s guests are data-driven funders that explore the role of data and evidence in addressing gender inequity, and where there is room to grow. Click to listen.

Resourcing African LGBTIQ+ movements for success and sustainability – Hivos: LGBTIQ+ movements in Africa are hanging by a thread due to escalating legal and social threats. Take for example the recent legislation criminalising sexual minorities in Ghana and Uganda. Hivos’ Onyonge Mengo sets out what funders can do to ensure African queer movements are resourced in the face of well-funded global anti-gender movements.

Baseline funding increase for BIPOC-led justice groups: ‘The first-ever cross-racial community of donors and movement leaders, the Donors of Color Network (DOCN), recently announced a new funding baseline of $120 million through the Climate Funders Justice Pledge (CFJP) for Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC)-led justice-focused groups, with two new pledgers, Pisces Foundation and Kresge Foundation dedicating more than 30 per cent of their climate giving towards BIPOC-led justice solutions’, writes Simon Hungin for Alliance.  Read more.


Jobs and Tenders

The Legal Education Foundation – Grants Officer: The Grants Officer is an important role, part of a small collaborative grants team delivering the Foundation’s 5-year strategy to 2025 and the Justice Together initiative. LEF’s priority is to develop stronger relationships with their grantees, which will enable them to better support them and learn more from what they fund. There are opportunities to shape the job by leading on areas of particular interest within the grants portfolio. Salary: £30-35,000. Contract: Full-time, permanent (flexibility considered). Location: Central London and remote. Applications are being reviewed on a rolling basis.

Wikimedia – Creative Director: As Creative Director, you are looking to join a team that is passionate about the power of brand, design and technology to change the world. This role will be responsible for collaborating on meaningful, idea-led work for a global movement and setting the creative vision for our programs. You will play a vital role in high visibility global projects critical to the future of Wikimedia. Salary: Annual pay range of this position for applicants based within the United States is US$124,446 to US$188,722 with multiple individualised factors. Location: Remote. Applications are being reviewed on a rolling basis.

The Legal Education Foundation – Communications Officer: Charity People is partnering with The Legal Education Foundation, an independent grant making foundation, to recruit the organisation’s first Communications Officer. The Communications Officer will play a core role within the organisation and will ensure that The Legal Education Foundation’s work and impact across different programmes is demonstrated and that the work of the foundations’ grantees is amplified. Salary: £30,000- £40,000 per annum. Location: Hybrid working, the team meets will need to be based in the office for 2 days per week. Contract: Full-time permanent or part-time 80% position. Deadline for application is 20 June.

Media Defence – Finance and Operations Director: Media Defence is recruiting a Finance and Operations Director to lead on finance, human resources, IT and operations within their international NGO. They are looking for a talented, fully-qualified finance professional who brings strong strategic and operational experience across all areas of budgeting, financial reporting, governance and risk. You will likely have worked in an international charity previously, and will ideally have gained exposure to international donor requirements and/or grant management. Working knowledge of French and/or Spanish would also be advantageous. Salary: not disclosed. Deadline for application is 23 June.

AJWS – Associate Director, Planned Giving: AJWS is seeking a dynamic and experienced development professional to design, implement and lead AJWS’s national planned giving program. Reporting to the Director, Eastern Region Team, the Associate Director Planned Giving will identify, cultivate and solicit prospects for planned gifts from appropriate donors, lay leaders, corporations and potential donors to support AJWS’s planned giving and endowment goals. Authorisation to work in the US is required. Salary: $89,500 – $125,500. Contract: Full time (40 Hrs). Location: Remote (US). Applications are being reviewed on a rolling basis.

Mediterranean Women’s Fund – Co-Deputy Director: two Co-Director positions are being created in 2023, to coincide with a change in leadership, as the current Director retires at the end of 2024. A one-year transition is envisioned – to ensure the best possible handover and to implement this new governance model – after which these positions will evolve from deputy directors to co-directors. A co-director from the northern Mediterranean has already been recruited internally; in order to represent the diversity of the region within its team, the FFMed is therefore looking for a person from the southern shore, but ideally willing to work in France. The ideal candidate should possess a passion for women’s rights, solid resources mobilization, managerial and interpersonal skills, and be proficient in French (French is the main work language of the MedWF, which explains why the job offer is only in French), English and Arabic. Salary: 39 000 EUR. Location: Paris, France. Deadline for application is 15 July.

Dreilinden – Consultancy: Dreilinden gGmbH invites proposals for a consultancy to run a participatory process in Eastern and Southern Africa. They have a strong preference for a consulting team based in and from Eastern and/or Southern Africa with intimate knowledge of the LGBTQIA* communities. Experience in designing and running participatory processes will be paramount. Teams with a deep understanding of innovative funding mechanisms will be prioritised. The consultancy will start in August/September 2023. Dreilinden will collaborate closely with the consulting team with a view to have the project completed by December 2023. Please submit your proposals to Stefan Bollier ( by 15 July 2023. Feedback will be provided in the first half of August 2023.

Various positions – American Jewish World Service (AJWS)
Various positions – Ford Foundation
Various positions – Urgent Action Fund for Women’s Human Rights
Various positions – Wellspring Philanthropic Fund
Various roles – Fondation de France
Various roles – Wikimedia Foundation
Various roles – Global fund for Children
Various roles – Disability Rights Fund
Various roles – Media Defence

*For more jobs, see the ‘Career Opportunities’ section of the Ariadne portalTo address pay gaps in the charity sector, we strongly encourage you to #showthesalary in your job adverts.


Public Meetings

London & Online

RE-ROOTED: Stories of Starting Again | 21 – 25 June
Comic Relief invites you to RE-ROOTED, an exhibition on London’s Southbank at Gallery@oxo. Discover an inspiring multimedia exhibition of stories from refugees who have rebuilt their lives in the UK. “It’s given me community; it’s given me freedom. I think the world is about to see – even me, I’m about to see – what I can do as a person in my fullest potential.” – Joel, who shares their story at Re-Rooted. Stay tuned for more information about this free event and discover how you can get involved online if you can’t attend in person.


Esmée Fairbairn Foundation – Pre-application Q&A webinar. This webinar is for organisations interested in applying to Esmée for support and have questions about their application process or guidance. The webinar aims to help organisations better understand whether they should invest time in applying for their funding or if their efforts might be better focused on other sources of funding. Date & time: 20 June, 11 am – 12 pm BST. Online. Register here.

Effects Framework: Reimagining Property Purchasing as a strategic tool. Join Dreilinden, Wellspring Philanthropic Fund, and Global Philanthropy Project as they share insights on how property purchase grants can be a strategic pillar to achieve positive long-term effects on civil society organizations and the movements at large. The webinar will introduce the effects framework, a monitoring and evaluation tool developed through a participatory process, discuss some of the key effects that emerged during the development of the tool, and provide concrete examples of how the funders can integrate property purchase into their practice. This is a grantmaker-only event. Grantmakers include employees of public and private foundations, donor governments, corporate funders, high-net-wealth individuals, wealth advisories, and funder networks. Date & time: 20 June, 10 am EDT/ 4 pm CEST/ 5 pm EAT. Online. Register here.


Berghof Foundation – From female combatants to filmmakers – Online film premiere. The film premiere, we will shed light on the experiences of female combatants during and after war together with the filmmakers and international experts. This event will be held in English and Spanish. Simultaneous interpretation will be provided in English, Spanish, Kurdish, Burmese and Thai. Date & time: 20 June, 14:00 – 15:30 CEST. Online. Register here.

Freedom House – Reviving News Media in an Embattled Europe report launch. Join this webinar to learn about Freedom House’s newest report on the pressures hindering news media’s role in democracy, and responses to overcome them. The event will feature researchers presenting key findings from the report, followed by a panel discussion. Date & time: 21 June, 9:00 am ET / 3:00 pm CEST. Online. Register here.

The Climate Justice – Just Transition Donor Collaborative, in partnership with Impatience Earth, are hosting a webinar on Disability and Climate Justice.  People with disabilities will be among those hardest hit by climate change, yet remain profoundly overlooked in climate policy. Join this webinar to learn from people with disabilities how the climate crisis impacts disabled people, and why amplifying their voice is key for climate justice. Date & time: 28 June, 15:30 BST. Online. Register here.

The Datafied Family: Algorithmic Encounters in Care, Intimacies, Routine and Play. This University of Surrey virtual workshop will bring international voices at the cutting-edge of sociology, communications, education data science and health to examine the impact of family technologies, which are subtly, and not so subtly altering the doing of care, intimacy, leisure, learning, play, routine and more. Date & time: 28 June, 9:30 – 15:00 BST. Online. Register here.

Global Trends in Climate Litigation. Hosted by LSE, this event marks the launch of the Grantham Research Institute’s (GRI) 2023 Global Trends in Climate Change Litigation Policy Report, an annual report now in its fifth year. This report presents an overview of climate litigation, highlighting recent developments and future trends. Date & time: 29 June 2023, 6:30 – 8:00 pm BST. In-person and online. Register here.

Ariadne’s core operations are supported by the American Jewish World Service, Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, Oak Foundation, Open Society Foundations, Rockefeller Brothers Fund, and Sigrid Rausing Trust.

Ariadne is also supported by voluntary contributions from its participants.

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