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 great apes and gibbons, thrive in a world where social and environmental justice, respect, and dignity for all are a reality. It partners with experts and advocates for change that supports global human rights and conservation movements.

The Arcus Foundation provided USD 19.1 million for development in 2021 through its grantmaking activities. Compared to 2020, this amount represents a decrease of 5% in real terms.

In 2021, the Arcus Foundation channelled its bilateral contributions mostly through non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and civil society (USD 16.2 million) and universities, research institutes or think tanks (USD 1.6 million).

In 2021, the Arcus Foundation’s development finance was primarily focused on Africa and Asia (excluding the Middle East). USD 9 million was allocated to Africa and USD 4.1 million to Asia (excluding the Middle East), accounting respectively for 47.2% and 21.3% of gross bilateral development finance. A sum of USD 2.8 million (14.9%) was unspecified by region in 2021, mainly including multi-regional programmes, core support and research grants.

In 2021, 50.3% of development finance went to the top 10 recipients. The Arcus Foundation’s most significant recipients included the Democratic Republic of the Congo (USD 2.5 million), Indonesia (USD 2.1 million) and Uganda (USD 0.9 million). Moreover, 33.4% of its development finance was not allocated by country.

Least developed countries (LDCs) received USD 5.1 million (26.8%) of Arcus Foundation’s gross disbursements in 2021. The Arcus Foundation allocated the highest share of its development finance (27.1%) to lower middle-income countries and 23.8% to upper middle-income countries, noting that USD 6.4 million (33.4%) was unallocated by income group.

In 2021, more than half of the Arcus Foundation’s commitments were allocated to general environmental protection. Investments in this area accounted for 67% of the foundation’s commitments (USD 14.3 million). Contributions to social infrastructure and services totalled USD 7 million (33%), primarily to support government and civil society (USD 7 million) in developing countries.

In 2021, the Arcus Foundation committed the largest shares of its contributions to the goals of life on land (SDG 15), gender equality (SDG 5), reduced inequalities (SDG 10) and peace, justice and strong institutions (SDG 16) of the United Nations 2030 Agenda.

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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 Sustainable Development Goal focus of private development finance, channels of delivery, unspecified/unallocated allocations, the gender equality policy marker, and the environment markers.

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