Trust Fund Factsheet
Tools for » Accelerating Progress towards the Economic Empowerment of Rural Women
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Women are central to the development of rural areas and to national economies: they account for a significant proportion of the agricultural labour force, play a key role in food production, especially in subsistence farming and perform most of the unpaid care work in rural areas. However, rural women and girls have restricted access to productive resources, such as land, agricultural inputs, finance and credit, extension services and technology, which in turn limits the efficiency of the agricultural sector. They face more difficulty than men in gaining access to public services, social protection, decent employment opportunities and local and national markets and institutions, due to cultural norms and security issues. Unpaid care work further hampers rural women’s ability to take advantage of on and off farm employment and market opportunities in the agricultural sector.

The Rural Women’s Economic Empowerment (RWEE) five year joint programme supports a results-oriented collaborative effort from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD), United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) to accelerate progress towards the economic empowerment of rural women. This coalition between UN Women, FAO, IFAD and WFP (collectively referred as the Participating UN Organizations) is expected to generate synergies that capitalize on each agency’s mandate, comparative advantage and institutional strength for more lasting and wider scale improvements in the livelihoods and rights of rural women, including young women.

To this effect, the Participating UN Organizations have agreed to adopt a coordinated approach to collaboration with donors who wish to support the implementation of the RWEE Programme and have therefore established the RWEE Multi-Partner Trust Fund (RWEE Fund).  The RWEE Fund uses a pass-through funding modality and is administered by the Multi-Partner Trust Fund Office (MPTF Office) of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in accordance with its financial regulations and rules.

The RWEE Programme is implemented in Ethiopia, Guatemala, Kyrgyzstan, Liberia, Nepal, Niger and Rwanda.


Assistance Strategy

The RWEE joint programme’s goal is to secure rural women’s livelihoods and rights in the context of the Post 2015 Development Agenda and sustainable development. It is articulated around four outcomes:

  • Outcome 1 on rural women’s improved food and nutrition security aims at increasing the productive potential of women smallholder farmers and enhancing their control and management of local food security reserves.
  • Outcome 2 on rural women’s increased income to sustain their livelihoods and create wealth focuses on creating, supporting and developing rural women-led enterprises, supporting their role along value chains, enhancing their income opportunities and promoting their linkages to high value markets.
  • Outcome 3 on rural women’s enhanced leadership and participation in their communities and in rural institutions, and in shaping laws, policies and programmes strengthens their voice and influence in key processes and engages male advocates at all levels to champion and support change for rural women’s empowerment.
  • Outcome 4 on more gender responsive policy environment catalyzes legislative and policy reforms for the effective enforcement of rural women’s land rights and their access to decent wage employment, social protection, and infrastructure.

The seven countries covered by the programme were selected based on, among other, the following criteria: strong agency presence, a conducive environment, Government’s commitment for gender equality and women’s empowerment, economic profile, existence of ongoing programmatic initiatives on which the programme can build on, and Pilot countries for the Purchase for Progress (P4P)  programme.

For more details please refer to the RWEE Programme Document



An International Steering Committee (ISC) of the RWEE Fund is set to oversee the allocation of funds mobilized at international level, and discuss the RWEE Fund requirements and priorities regarding the implementation modalities, the results based reporting, and the information management including donor visibility. The ISC is composed of the following: one senior official from each of the four participating entities: UN Women, FAO, IFAD, and WFP; Representatives of the main donors to the RWEE Fund; The AA is an ex-officio member of the international SC. The ISC is chaired by the UN senior representative and the donors’ representative.

The RWEE Fund Technical Advisory Committee provides technical support to the Steering Committees and Participating UN Organizations and includes senior technical/advisor level representatives of UNWOMEN, FAO, IFAD and WFP. Other relevant experts, including from relevant government, regional, and civil society counterparts may be invited and/or recruited by the Technical Advisory Committee on an ad hoc basis to participate in the Committee.

National Steering Committee (SC) of the RWEE Fund is set up in each of the countries covered by the programme. The national SCs are co-chaired by the designated government official, and the Lead Agency. The members of the national SC are: a representative from each of the participating entities: UN Women, FAO, IFAD, and WFP; a representative from each of the following ministries: agriculture/rural development, gender/women’s affairs, economy and finance, community/local development, youth and environment; representatives from the main donors to the programme.

The Steering Committee:

  • oversee the allocation of funds to the different components of the country programme. provide coordination and guidance on programme strategic vision and implementation;
  • review and approve the periodic narrative and financial progress reports consolidated by the administrative agent, based on the progress reports submitted by UN Women, FAO, IFAD and WFP.


Programme Management Unit (PMU) is responsible for the overall management of the programme. It staffed by a senior programme coordinator, and an operations/knowledge management specialist. Regardless of the geographical location of the programme coordination unit, the programme manager will report to a designated senior official from the entity hosting the coordination unit. It provides Secretariat support to the International Steering Committee. 

In each country, a National Project Guidance and Coordination Mechanism is established to build synergies, address cross sector matters and review progress in the implementation of the programme’s activities. It includes government representatives from Ministries such as agriculture/rural development and gender/women’s affairs, the country representatives of the four entities and the national programme coordinator.


Administrative Agent

The Multi-Partner Trust Fund Office (MPTF Office) serves as the Administrative Agent (AA). The AA is responsible for, receiving, administering and managing contributions from donors; disburse funds to Implementing Partners, based on ISC & SC approved work plans, consolidating annual and final financial reports; transmit annual/final Consolidated Reports to donors through the PMU.

Recent Documents

This tab shows only recent documents relevant at the Fund level. To see more documents at both the fund and project level go to the Document Center.

Key Figures
Funding Status
Participating Organizations are required to submit final year-end expenditures by April 30 in the following year; Interim expenditure figures are submitted on a voluntary basis and therefore current year figures are not final until the year-end expenditures have been submitted.
Total as of
Values in US$
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Funds with Administrative Agent
Contributions from Donors 34,772,617  
Interest and Investment Income (from Fund) 134,302  
Interest (from Participating Organizations) 8,274  
Total source of funds   34,915,194
Transferred to Participating Organizations 27,420,076  
Refunds from Participating Organizations -459,666  
Administrative Agent Fee 347,726  
Direct Cost 2,425,321  
Bank Charges 624  
Total use of funds   29,734,081
Balance with Administrative Agent   5,181,112
As a percentage of deposits   14.9%
Funds with Participating Organizations
Transfers to Participation Organizations 29,849,758  
Total resources   29,849,758
Participating Organizations' Expenditure 28,148,346  
Refunds from Participating Organizations -464,027  
Total expenses     28,612,373
Balance with Participating Organizations   1,237,385
As a percentage of transfers   4.1%
Total Balance of Funds   6,418,497
As a percentage of deposits   18.5%
Delivery Analysis
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Multi-Partner Trust Fund Office (MPTF Office), Bureau of Management, United Nations Development Programme; Fax: +1 212 906 6990;  

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