Women + Income = Women Thriving


Building on what we’ve learned through previous grantmaking initiatives, such as WAGES & the WFCO Relief Fund and insights from partners across the state, WFCO launched WINcome in 2021, a program designed to address the economic realities of women in Colorado. 

Through grant investments and partnerships, WINcome demonstrates that individuals can advance economically when they are trusted to make their own decisions about what they & their families need. WINcome provides grantee partners with unrestricted funding of up to 50% of the grant and funds that will be dedicated to providing flexible cash assistance. WINcome grants also advance systemic changes that support gender, racial, & economic equity for Colorado women and families.


WINcome Year 2 Evaluation cover thumbnail WINcome Year 2 Evaluation Executive Summary cover thumbnail WINcome year one evaluation thumbnail
- Read the Year Two WINcome Evaluation & Learning: Process & Impact Report  - Read the Year Two WINcome Evaluation & Learning: Executive Summary - Read the Year One WINcome Evaluation & Learning: Process & Impact Report 



Why flexible cash assistance? 

Across the country and around the world, there is renewed interest in direct cash assistance, a proven anti-poverty strategy with a long history rooted in communities of color, that means giving money to those who need it most and trusting individuals to spend it as they choose. Nonprofits and governments have seen remarkable outcomes among recipients of monthly cash assistance payments. WFCO has witnessed through our own work that cash assistance is a successful way to directly support economic security for individuals and communities.

WINcome: Women + Income = Women Thriving

Meet the women advancing economically with the help of our grantee partner, Center for Community Wealth Building (CCWB). 



Grantmaking cycle

Funding opportunities are currently closed. WFCO partners with WINcome grantees for three years, with the first annual grants made in late 2021 and yearly renewals for up to three years of funding through 2024. 


About WINcome grantees

Through WINcome, WFCO partners with organizations that serve women, including trans women, intersex women, and non-trans women, and nonbinary people who are seeking support, including those:

  • experiencing poverty,
  • facing barriers to economic opportunity and security,
  • experiencing historic and systemic marginalization on the basis of their gender and additional intersection of identity, including race, ethnicity, immigration status, age, sexuality, gender identity, gender expression, religion, or ability; or
  • who are survivors of domestic violence or intimate partner abuse.

Our 17 grantee partners:

  • Provide direct or flexible cash assistance to women experiencing poverty or facing barriers to economic security, to supplement their incomes and complement the services received through partners’ programs. 
  • Improve access to flexible and holistic resources, partners may offer support securing resources such as:
    • Jobs with pay and benefits that satisfy basic needs, close the gender and racial income gap, and support economic security;
    • Education and training, and ongoing opportunities to upskill and reskill;
    • Money and resources to start and grow businesses;
    • Childcare and other caregiver support;
    • Support for basic human needs, such as food, housing, health care, and transportation.
  • Support public policy and systems changes to improve access to and increase public investment in flexible resources and holistic supports that foster economic opportunity, security, and equity.
  • Demonstrate that individuals can advance economically when they are trusted to make their own decisions about what they and their families need. 


Meet Our Grantees

 WINcome Direct Service Grantees

 WINcome Public Policy Grantees



Full Circle of Lake County staff photo

"This grant has given us the opportunity to financially incentivize and financially support clients who are actively working towards improving the wellbeing of themselves and their families by establishing a family goal plan and participating in monthly check-ins with staff.  It is beneficial to us and the clients to have funds that can be used towards addressing the barriers that families face in achieving their goals and that can be directed by families themselves the way their family goals are." 

- Full Circle of Lake County, WINcome Grantee Partners

WINcome Frequently Asked Questions

 Read Our FAQs

Is WINcome currently accepting applications?

We are not accepting WINcome applications at this time. Please sign up for our e-newsletter and follow The Women’s Foundation on social media to find out about any future funding opportunities. You can learn about other grantmaking opportunities at The Women’s Foundation, including The Women & Girls of Color Fund. We have also compiled this list of fundraising resources in the hopes it will be helpful in your fundraising journey. 

When is the next open WINcome grant cycle?

WINcome was designed to be a three-year funding commitment for current WINcome grant partners, starting in 2021. Our next open WINcome grant cycle will take place in 2024. Please sign up for our e-newsletter and follow The Women’s Foundation on social media to find out about any future funding opportunities. 

What are WINcome’s Grant Guidelines?

Although we are not accepting applications for WINcome at this time, interested individuals can find WINcome’s 2021 Grant Guidelines here.

How were WINcome grant partners selected?

The Women’s Foundation of Colorado received WINcome applications from 90 direct service and public policy advocacy organizations across the state. With support from programs staff, WFCO’s volunteer Direct Service Grantmaking Committee and Public Policy Committee reviewed applications for alignment with WINcome priorities and WFCO’s mission, vision, values, and goal of gender, racial, and economic equity. The Direct Service Grantmaking and Public Policy Committees then advised the Board of Trustees in the final selection of our 19 WINcome grant partners. The Board of Trustees approved the final WINcome grant partners.

What are the range of services offered by WINcome grant partners?

WINcome direct-service grant partners offer a range of holistic services and are dedicated to providing complementary flexible cash assistance with WINcome grant funding. WINcome public policy grant partners work statewide to advance systemic changes that support gender, racial, & economic equity for Colorado women and families. We encourage you to learn more about all our grant partners through their respective websites, hyperlinked in the Meet Our Grantees section above.

What is flexible cash assistance?

Flexible cash assistance is, as The Women’s Foundation of Colorado defines it, financial assistance that increases an individual’s financial freedom through direct cash assistance and/or payments to third parties on behalf of the individual. It is connected to the larger national conversation around basic income, guaranteed income, and universal basic income. 

  • Direct cash assistance refers to cash that is distributed directly to an individual without any restrictions or conditions surrounding the payment.
  • Basic income refers to recurring, unrestricted, unconditional payments that are enough to cover basic needs.*
  • Guaranteed income refers to recurring, unrestricted, and unconditional payments that supplement the current benefits of the social safety net, meaning it does not replace them. The focus of this income distribution tends to be on low-middle income communities that are marginalized, as it aims to address historic gender, racial, and economic injustices.*
  • Universal basic income refers to recurring, unrestricted, and unconditional payments made to everyone and does not take into account household income.* 

The foundation of each of these structures is trust. WFCO and WINcome grantee partners have witnessed through our work that cash assistance distributed in trust and flexibility is a successful way to directly support economic security for women and communities.

*To dive deeper into the definitions of basic income, guaranteed income, and universal basic income, please see Income Movement’s Basic Income Terminology guide, a resource we utilize in WINcome’s flexible cash assistance work.

What is the Benefits Cliff and is it connected to WINcome?

The Benefits Cliff occurs at the point when a marginal increase in income results in families losing “work support” benefits, like the earned income tax credits, Medicaid, SNAP, child care assistance, etc. However, the increase in income is still not enough for families to cover the loss of those benefits or meet their basic needs. In essence, an increase in earnings actually leaves families worse-off than before. This paradox is one that WFCO aims to mitigate and change through WINcome, so that Colorado women and their families have better opportunities to advance economically.

What is the Colorado Direct Cash Transfer Community of Practice?

In the summer of 2022, The Women’s Foundation of Colorado joined the co-convening team for the Colorado Direct Cash Transfer Community of Practice, or the CCOP. This state-focused community of practice was inspired by the national Guaranteed Income Community of Practice that is spearheaded by the Economic Security Project.

The CCOP meet regularly from June 2022 through December 2023 to learn from and with various direct cash stakeholders, including direct cash pilots, interested nonprofit organizations, governmental entities, public policy organizations, and community participants in direct cash pilots.  

The Benefits Cliff Working Group, a branch of the CCOP, began meeting in fall 2022 and dove deeply into understanding and mitigating benefits cliff effects on direct cash and flexible cash assistance program participants. In August 2023, the Benefits Cliff Working Group transitioned into the Policy Working Group, which aims to advance cash assistance through policy change. 

WINcome grant partners actively engage with the CCOP and the working groups.


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