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Support for women in health and medical research: Financial, mentorship and other resources

L’Oreal Australia and New Zealand For Women in Science Fellowships

L’Oreal’s For Women in Science Fellowships offers 12-month fellowships to the value of $25,000 to assist female scientists (with no more than five years of post-doctoral experience) undertaking research at an Australian or New Zealand academic or research institution. The fellowships are intended to help early career women scientists to consolidate their careers and rise to leadership positions in science. Three fellowships are awarded annually to women who have shown scientific excellence in their career to date and who have an appropriate research plan that will be assisted by the fellowship.

Franklin Women

Franklin Women is a not-for-profit social enterprise providing a network for Australian women working in health and medical research-related careers. The mission of Franklin Women is to contribute to the retention of women working in the health sciences. They aim to do this by:

  • Building a supportive community of like-minded women working in health and medical research-related careers
  • Providing opportunities for personal and professional development
  • Creating awareness of health and medical research careers outside of academia and opportunities for female academic researchers to transition into such roles
  • Advocating for initiatives that will remove barriers to women having long-term, academic health and medical research careers
  • Increasing awareness of the contribution of women to the field of health and medical research.

Women in Science Enquiry Network Inc.

The Women in Science Enquiry Network Inc. (WISENET) was established to increase women’s participation in the sciences and to link people in different branches of science and those working towards a participatory and socially useful science. WISENET is a supportive and active network of people interested in improving opportunities for women at every level and in every branch of science. WISENET membership is open to women and men who are interested in working for change.

UN Women Australia

The Australian National Committee for UN Women is one of 17 global national committees for UN Women, a program of the United Nations. It was established in 1989 as an Australian non-government organisation, with headquarters in Canberra. UN Women Australia sees its role as working to:

  • Raise funds to support UN Women’s projects and programs
  • Challenge attitudes that perpetuate gender inequality in Australia and the region
  • Engage with the Australian government to raise awareness of the work of UN Women.

UN Women Australia aims to be strongly engaged in activities relating to gender rights and the empowerment of women, particularly those relating to the core mandate of UN Women:

  • millennium development goals
  • women’s leadership and participation in public life
  • women, peace and security
  • women’s economic empowerment
  • violence against women.

UN Women Australia sends a delegation to the UN Commission on the status of women each year, including a delegate representing young women.

Emily’s List

EMILY’s List Australia was founded in 1996 by a group of progressive women in the Australian Labor Party (ALP) who were passionate about increasing women’s representation and rights in Australia. EMILY’s List Australia is a not-for-profit organisation providing financial, political and personal support to female political candidates in a variety of ways, including:

  • Campaign donations
  • Training on essential skills necessary to win and hold office
  • Mentoring women by linking new candidates with former MPs, candidates and campaign experts for advice and counsel
  • Access to a volunteer base for their campaigns
  • Gender gap research to ensure ALP candidates and MPs have the cutting edge of polling and research to win the women’s vote.

Science in Australia Gender Equity, Forum Steering Committee

The establishment of the Australian Academy of Science (SAGE) Forum Steering Committee was prompted by continued concern about the under-representation of women in science. The steering committee aims to examine strategies that could address this imbalance and be widely implemented. The SAGE Forum plans to develop a trial of the Athena SWAN Charter in Australia. The Athena SWAN Charter was established in 2005 in the United Kingdom, in recognition of the under-representation and loss of female talent in the scientific workforce there. This program requires participant research organisations and departments to reflect on the reasons for the attrition and to develop an action plan tailored to the specific circumstances of their organisation or department. Participation in the Athena SWAN Charter has been mandated by some United Kingdom funding bodies, resulting in widespread adoption.

Women in Community Life Advisory Committee

The Women in Community Life Advisory Committee was established to provide advice to the City of Greater Geelong Council on matters relating to women’s participation, representation and leadership in community life. The three key themes that frame the work of the committee are advocacy, education and training and raising awareness. Specifically, the Committee was established to:

  • Identify barriers to women’s participation in the civil, civic and political life of the Geelong community.
  • Increase opportunities and access for women to participate in leadership and decision making committees and processes.
  • Increase active participation of women in community groups and networks.
  • Be inclusive, representative and encouraging of women of all demographics.
  • Invite comment and feedback from individuals, community groups and organisations on strategies that address local based priorities for increased women’s participation, representation and leadership.
  • Provide advice on current or emerging gaps in gender equity, women’s participation, representation and leadership.
  • Promote open and transparent policies, processes and practices, and highlight the right of all persons, and particularly women, to take part in public life.
  • Build on existing links between agencies and community groups.