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Global Development and Population Program

“Development” is about more than economic growth or reducing poverty. Development means helping individuals and groups reach their full human potential and control their destiny. That is the goal of the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation’s Global Development and Population Program: to help people around the world develop their capabilities as individuals, citizens, workers, and parents.

This ambitious aim is expressed in two ways. First, we make grants to expand women’s choices about whether to have children, how to raise their family, and how they earn a living. A nation must empower women to achieve equitable social and economic development, so we support organizations that work to expand women’s choices. This support builds on the Foundation’s long-standing commitment to women’s reproductive health and rights, and it includes a new strategy to improve economic opportunities for women in the developing world.

Second, we work to amplify the voices of people calling for government officials to deliver better results, so citizens are more likely to get a quality education, receive adequate health care, obtain needed services, and earn a decent living. Yet it is not enough simply to amplify citizens’ voices. We want to make sure that governments respond to people’s needs, particularly in providing essential public services. To that end, we make grants to help citizen groups get information about what their governments do, helping them take action to improve the quality of schools, health clinics, and other services in their communities. We support organizations that shine a light on how governments are financed and how they spend their money. Our grantees monitor the quality of government-financed services, such as health and education.