GSR receives $3.3 million grant from Hilton Foundation

A screenshot of the Global Sisters Report homepage on June 17, 2022 (GSR screenshot)

A screenshot of the Global Sisters Report homepage on June 17, 2022 (GSR screenshot)

The National Catholic Reporter Publishing Company has received a $3.3 million grant from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation for the continuation and expansion of Global Sisters Report, an online publication and platform dedicated to stories about Catholic sisters, and their missions and ministries around the world. Global Sisters Report also provides a forum for congregational news and sister-written columns, all of which facilitates and enhances communication across the emerging "global sisterhood."

The grant was approved May 17 and will be in effect Sept. 1-Aug. 31, 2025. The new grant will enable Global Sisters Report to introduce translation options, expand its coverage, particularly in Latin America and Africa, and embark on other special projects.

GSR has also received support from the Thomas and Dorothy Leavey Foundation, from its readers through an ongoing donor campaign, and from the GHR Foundation for its GSR in the Classroom project.

"Before the Hilton Foundation equipped NCR to launch the Global Sisters Report in 2014, too many compelling stories of sisters' work around the world had gone untold," said NCR Publisher and CEO Bill Mitchell. "With this new grant from Hilton, the GSR staff looks forward to pursuing their stories ever more resolutely in the years ahead."

Sr. Jane Wakahiu, a member of the Little Sisters of St. Francis, and associate vice president of Program Operations and Head, Catholic Sisters Initiative, for the Hilton Foundation, said:

We are honored to partner with GSR to increase coverage and repository of sisters' stories, build a body of knowledge on the impact of sisters in integral human development, and disseminate information on the life and ministries of women's religious on improving lives for the most disadvantaged in society. We are profoundly grateful for the catalytic partnership that weaves narratives of sisters and their work across the globe, amplifying the voices of those in the margins. GSR has not only created a network of Catholic sisters' writers worldwide but also has provided learning avenues and opportunities for partnership across countries and around the world.

Global Sisters Report launched in April 2014 and has since grown to an award-winning publication with an estimated average of 100,000 readers monthly. In addition to news, information, stories and columns, GSR has introduced a classroom edition, an enhanced resources section and a special page that shows how sisters' ministries help fulfill the United Nations' sustainable development goals.

GSR also hosts periodic presentations and interviews with or about sisters through Witness & Grace Conversations.

"We appreciate the faith and confidence that the Hilton Foundation has placed in Global Sisters Report to continue our efforts to reflect the 'global sisterhood' — helping to highlight sisters' ministries and mission, connect sisters with each other, and provide insights into trends in religious life," said GSR Editor Gail DeGeorge about the new grant. "We have worked hard to produce high-quality journalism and special projects that fulfill the mission envisioned when Global Sisters Report was launched and remains our focus today – to be 'a dynamic online community that reports on and gives voice to women religious around the world.' "

Other innovations include the Community News section and Monday Starter, a weekly roundup of sister news.

Global Sisters Report has won national recognition for its website overall, individual stories and columns, and for its ambitious special series. Some notable series that have received awards include "A Just Transition" (2021) about the effects of the shift from fossil fuels to sustainable energy; and "A Place to Call Home" (2020) about the Catholic sisters' efforts at international, national and local levels to address homelessness. "A Place to Call Home" included an interactive map to which sisters contributed information about more than 100 other projects.

GSR also conducted a special focus on anti-human trafficking efforts by sisters in 2019 to coincide with the 10th anniversary of Talitha Kum, the international "network of networks" of Catholic sisters involved in anti-trafficking efforts. In 2018, Global Sisters Report produced a special series about the sisters' work with migrants and refugees in multiple countries, "Seeking Refuge."

More information about Global Sisters Report and how the vision by Presentation Sr. Joyce Meyer, who now serves as GSR's international liaison, and Tom Fox, NCR editor and publisher emeritus, is being realized is available in this video:

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