Our Impact: Imagine Something Bigger


Dear ABF Community –

For 25 years, girls in Minnesota have turned to the Ann Bancroft Foundation (ABF) to invest in their dreams, and nurture their confidence, pride, and self-advocacy. Our founder, polar explorer Ann Bancroft, launched ABF with the belief that providing direct grants to girls would support life-changing experiences, helping girls build the confidence and character they would need to weather challenges they faced in the moment and throughout their lives.

As we look ahead to the next 25 years and beyond, I’m excited to share with you our new strategic plan that will carry us forward with purpose. In short, our commitment to investing in girls and increasing access to transformative experiences remains unchanged. Our focus continues to be supporting girls as they develop the competence, confidence, connection, character and caring to live their dreams.

Staying true to our mission and vision, we will continue to support all who identify as girls to live their dreams and imagine something bigger. To do this, we will strengthen and grow our direct grants to girls, and deepen the mentorship and ongoing development opportunities that connect our community to life-long friendships and support.

This work has already begun; in 2022, we launched our Trailblazer Fellowship that allows previous grantees (Trailblazers) to apply for a new grant to fund a dream as a head start on their road to independence, college, and career. In the coming year, we plan to increase our Trailblazer grants from $500 to $1,000, and to amplify the stories of impact and inspiration that demonstrate the transformational impact of our efforts and the dreams of girls.

Our new strategic priorities will ground and frame internal conversations and the external work of ABF. They are:

● Helping girls build skills to navigate the challenges they face today, and

● Laying the foundation for future successes that strengthen our communities.

These are ambitious priorities; we encourage girls to imagine something bigger and we must do the same because girls need us now, more than ever.

Existing gender disparity gaps continue to widen, and in Minnesota, data shows that girls (grades K-12), especially from historically excluded communities, have been among those most impacted in health, safety, and education. We believe every girl should have the chance to live their dream and reach their full potential, and we see our grantmaking, mentorship, and ongoing development opportunities remaining central to our efforts to disrupt the harmful effects of gender inequities.

This strategic plan was informed by the vision and leadership of Ann Bancroft Foundation, as well as the Ann Bancroft Foundation community – Trailblazers, staff, board and committee members, parents, mentors, donors, activity providers, and peer and partner organizations – while maintaining the cultures and values of our founder, polar explorer Ann Bancroft.

As always, we will center and amplify the voices of girls, listening to the dreams they see themselves, and surrounding them with a supportive network that encourages their confidence to dream. We’re committed to listening to and learning from our communities, recognizing the importance of gender inclusivity and fostering a sense of belonging.

As we implement this plan in the coming years, we will continue to be accessible to our community. Our team is eager to answer any questions you may have. You can also be part of bringing this ambitious plan to life by donating, volunteering, and sharing your own story.

As we move forward together, we are excited to realize new and expanded impacts to transform the lives of girls and strengthen our communities.







Ethelind Kaba
Executive Director
Ann Bancroft Foundation