womenA new global women’s equality campaign has won the support of former prime minister Gordon Brown, as well as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Facebook.

Chime for Change is set to be formally launched this week in California and among the co-founders of the organisation are singer Beyonce and actress Salma Hayek Pinault.

Francois-Henri Pinault, the chief executive of Gucci’s parent company PPR, is also involved, as well as Frida Giannini, Gucci’s creative director.

Desmond Tutu is on the advisory board of Chime for Change along with former Labour prime minister Brown, reports the Financial Times.

“Chime for Change is a pivotal moment for mobilising public opinion in support of the 32 million young girls still not in primary school and the tens of millions of adolescent girls who do not receive the opportunity of secondary education,” said the ex-UK leader.

Catapult, a crowd-sourcing online platform backed by the Gates Foundation, has also teamed up with the women’s equality body.

Unicef, The White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood, Equality Now and the Global Fund for Women are all on board with the scheme, but Caryl Stern, chief executive of the US Fund for Unicef, insisted Chime for Change will not take a position on controversial subjects such as abortion and contraception.

One area Chime for Change could look to improve is gender diversity in the workplace, with many top companies around the world failing to get women into their boardrooms.

UK prime minister David Cameron recently stated those businesses without women in top jobs are “missing out” on what a female perspective can provide to the running of a firm.

The leader also admitted he should have ensured there were more women in senior positions within his own Cabinet, which features only four females compared to 18 males.

Theresa May, Justine Greening, Maria Miller and Theresa Villiers are the only women in the Cabinet at the moment.