The Western Union Foundation unveils “Opportunity Beyond Borders”

Giving By Emily Larson October 9, 2019

The Western Union Foundation is proud to announce Opportunity Beyond Borders, a three-year commitment to provide vulnerable youth with the skills and education needed to succeed in today’s global digital economy.

“As a global mobilizer of money, Western Union, along with the Western Union Foundation, is in a unique position to reach across borders to help people all around the world,” said Elizabeth Roscoe, executive director of the Western Union Foundation and Western Union’s head of corporate brand and purpose.

Unveiled at Concordia Summit, during the 74th session of the UN General Assembly in New York, the program will focus its $15 million investment on non-governmental organization (NGO) programs and research across five continents by 2022. Supported programs will equip people on the move with the technology and entrepreneurship skills needed to thrive in the jobs of the future as well as provide other critical supports like counseling, career guidance, and scholarships.

“Our world is becoming increasingly digital and more global in exciting ways – and yet more people than ever before have been forcibly displaced by crises and natural disasters,” Roscoe said. “We understand the need to serve vulnerable populations, like refugees and marginalized youth, who are less likely to have access to the skills needed to participate in the global economy.”

The Western Union Foundation has already begun executing on its Opportunity Beyond Borders commitment. Some of these initiatives include:

Programs: Through the funding of programs like MIT D-Lab and Watson Institute which focus on innovation and business development skills programs for future entrepreneurs, we are able to support underrepresented youth in partnership with the Techstars Foundation. Learn more here.

Research: Funding a multi-year joint initiative between the Center for Global Development (CGD) and Refugees International to generate global and local evidence for the need for policy changes that improve refugees’ formal labor market access (LMA). Learn more here.

Grantmaking Challenge: Grassroots non-profits who align with our mission will have the opportunity to receive funding, with an open grant process launching in Fall 2019 across 25 key geographies. Additional details will be made available on in October.

Opportunity Beyond Borders follows the successful completion of Education for Better, a goal set in 2015 to provide 50,000 women, youth, migrants and refugees with workforce training and education, enabling access to the global economy. Thanks to the generosity of Western Union and its partners, the Western Union Foundation has exceeded its goal, impacting the lives of more than 75,000 people. To learn more about Education for Better, see our wrap up report here.

Do you want to help support Opportunity Beyond Borders? Donate to the Western Union Foundation here.

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