Ivanka Trump's global women's program halfway toward goal

Ivanka Trump comes onto stage as President Donald Trump speaks at a campaign rally in support of Senate candidates Sen. Kelly Loeffler, R-Ga., and David Perdue in Dalton, Ga., Monday, Jan. 4, 2021. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson) (Brynn Anderson, Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

WASHINGTON – Ivanka Trump's global women's development program is about halfway toward its goal of helping 50 million women in developing countries advance economically by 2025.

That's according to an annual report for the U.S. government's Women's Global Development and Prosperity Initiative released Wednesday as the program nears its two-year mark.

The program reached roughly 12.6 million women worldwide in 2020, despite the coronavirus pandemic, up from approximately 12.2 million in the prior year, according to the report.

That brings to approximately 24.8 million the total number of women the program has reached in its first two years, about halfway toward equipping 50 million women across the developing world with the skills they need to climb the economic ladder.

“That's millions of lives full of promise, mothers who can better provide for their children and women who will start businesses and become job creators, investing back in their communities,” Ivanka Trump, President Donald Trump's daughter, said in the report.

The program partners with foreign governments and the private sector to help women by increasing opportunities for education and skills training, access to capital and markets, and to remove and reduce legal barriers to their participation in the global economy.

President Trump established the program in February 2019, directing the U.S. government to make global women's development a cornerstone of U.S. foreign policy and national security. Ivanka Trump has promoted the program during visits to Africa and South America.

Congress has approved a total of $300 million for the program for the 2020 and 2021 federal budget years.