Melinda Gates and MacKenzie Scott Photograph:( AFP )
The powerful philanthropic pairing will donate the entire amount to the winners of the 'Equality Can't Wait Challenge', which is the first competition centered on gender equality in the United States with an award of this magnitude
Melinda Gates and MacKenzie Scott, one of the world's wealthiest women, have announced a new round of large charitable donations totaling $40 million for advancing the power and influence of women over the next decade.
The powerful philanthropic pairing will donate the entire amount to the winners of the 'Equality Can't Wait Challenge', which is the first competition centered on gender equality in the United States with an award of this magnitude.
"The overwhelming response to the Challenge proves there's no shortage of transformational ideas about how to accelerate progress for women and girls," said Melinda French Gates, founder of Pivotal Ventures.
"The next step is to make sure those game-changing ideas get the support they need to become fully realized and improve people's lives. We can break the patterns of history and advance gender equality, but we must commit to lifting up organizations, like the ones receiving awards today, that are ready to lift up women and girls," she added.
The four awardees will be selected following a multi-phase process. Their ideas center on the voices of women who have been most impacted by gender inequity, focus on action and leverage the inherent strengths and power of women to tackle the barriers they face today.
French Gates and Scott, who were formerly married to Seattle-based tech founders Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos, respectively, are famous for their large charitable donations.
Melinda Gates is the co-chair of The Gates Foundation that gives away roughly $5 billion each year in areas like global public health and development.
Meanwhile, MacKenzie Scott, who quickly gave away an estimated $6 billion after her divorced from Amazon founder Jeff Bezos in 2019 and is now a powerful independent philanthropist in her own right.
(With inputs from agencies)