Arcus Foundation

The Arcus Foundation is a charitable foundation with offices in the United States and the United Kingdom, established in 2000 by Jon Stryker.

The Arcus Foundation aims to ensure that lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) people as well as apes thrive in a world where social and environmental justice, and respect and dignity for all are a reality. It partners with experts and advocates for change that supports global human rights and conservation movements. International programmes serving developing countries include Social Justice and Great Apes & Gibbons.

The Arcus Foundation disbursed USD 15.1 million for development in 2019 in the form of grants. Compared to 2018, this amount represents a decrease by 7% in real terms.

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In 2019, the Arcus Foundation channelled nearly all of its allocations through bilateral channels, mostly non-governmental organisations (78%) and universities, research institutes and think tanks (13%).

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In 2019, civil society organisations (CSOs) received USD 13 million of gross disbursements. Of this, 7% was allocated to CSOs as core contributions and 93% was channelled through CSOs to implement projects initiated by the provider (earmarked funding). CSOs based in developing countries received 25% of the Arcus Foundation’s allocations channelled to/through all CSOs.

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In 2019, the Arcus Foundation’s development finance was primarily focused on Africa and Asia. USD 7 million was allocated to Africa and USD 4 million to Asia, accounting respectively for 49% and 25% of gross development finance. Fourteen per cent of gross disbursements were unspecified by region in 2019.

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Bilateral private development finance by recipient country

In 2019, 51% of gross disbursements went to the Arcus Foundation’s top 10 recipients, most notably Indonesia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Kenya. The share of 33% was not allocated by country, mainly relating to expenditure for projects and programmes with a regional scope/unrestricted character.

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Least developed countries received USD 4 million (29%) of the Arcus Foundation’s gross disbursements in 2019. The Arcus Foundation allocated the highest share of its development grants (38%) to middle-income countries in 2019, noting that 33% was unallocated by income group.

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Note: LDC: least developed country; LIC: low-income country; LMIC: lower middle-income country; UMIC: upper middle-income country.

In 2019, most of the Arcus Foundation’s development finance was allocated to the environmental protection sector (under multisector/cross-cutting). Contributions in this area accounted for 63% of its commitments (USD 12 million), targeting biodiversity conservation. Commitments for social infrastructure and services totalled USD 7 million (37%), focusing on human rights.

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In terms of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the Arcus Foundation focused most of its development finance on life on land; peace, justice & strong institutions; and reduced inequalities.

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In 2019, the Arcus Foundation committed USD 7 million (37%) of its allocable development grants to gender equality and women’s empowerment.

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The methodological notes provide further details on the definitions and statistical methodologies applied, including core and earmarked contributions to multilateral organisations, the SDG focus of private development finance, channels of delivery, unspecified/unallocated allocations, the gender equality policy marker, and the environment markers.

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