REALIZING GENERATION EQUALITY

A Blueprint for a Gender Equal World

In June of 2021, 50,000 delegates participated in the Generation Equality Forum (GEF), a global gathering to set clear actions on sustainable and irreversible progress towards gender equality.

The outcome of the forum saw nearly $40 billion of confirmed investments to advance ambitious policy and program commitments from governments, philanthropy, civil society, youth organizations, and the private sector.

Given the disproportionate impact COVID-19 has had on women and girls, this funding and action commitments go a long way to ensure that when we build back from the pandemic, they are not left behind.

A Blueprint for a Gender Equal World

In June of 2021, 50,000 delegates participated in the Generation Equality Forum (GEF), a global gathering to set clear actions on sustainable and irreversible progress towards gender equality.

The outcome of the forum saw nearly $40 billion of confirmed investments to advance ambitious policy and program commitments from governments, philanthropy, civil society, youth organizations, and the private sector.

1/3

In the run-up to Generation Equality Forum (GEF), Women Moving Millions (WMM) and the UN Foundation came together to engage our community in the GEF agenda-setting process, both to strengthen our understanding of the process and drive additional commitments to support GEF’s bold, feminist agenda. Through a four-part conversation series, we invited renowned philanthropy and private sector leaders, advocates, and experts in their respective fields to explore key questions that intersect with the issues of gender equality and philanthropy.

This report will explore key themes and topics from each of those four conversations

Conversation 1: Building Strong & Resilient Movements
Conversation 2: Preventing and Decreasing Gender-based violence
Conversation 3: Feminist Action for Climate Justice
Conversation 4: Transforming Economic Justice

In the run-up to Generation Equality Forum (GEF), Women Moving Millions (WMM) and the UN Foundation came together to engage our community in the GEF agenda-setting process, both to strengthen our understanding of the process and drive additional commitments to support GEF’s bold, feminist agenda. Through a four-part conversation series, we invited renowned philanthropy and private sector leaders, advocates, and experts in their respective fields to explore key questions that intersect with the issues of gender equality and philanthropy.

In the run-up to Generation Equality Forum (GEF), Women Moving Millions (WMM) and the UN Foundation came together to engage our community in the GEF agenda-setting process, both to strengthen our understanding of the process and drive additional commitments to support GEF’s bold, feminist agenda. Through a four-part conversation series, we invited renowned philanthropy and private sector leaders, advocates, and experts in their respective fields to explore key questions that intersect with the issues of gender equality and philanthropy.

This report will explore key themes and topics from each of those four conversations

Conversation 1: Building Strong & Resilient Movements
Conversation 2: Preventing and Decreasing Gender-based violence
Conversation 3: Feminist Action for Climate Justice
Conversation 4: Transforming Economic Justice

READ MORE

In the run-up to GEF, Women Moving Millions (WMM) and the UN Foundation came together to engage our community in the GEF agenda-setting process, both to strengthen our understanding of the process and drive additional commitments to support GEF’s bold, feminist agenda. Through a four-part conversation series, we invited renowned philanthropy and private sector leaders, advocates, and experts in their respective fields to explore key questions that intersect with the issues of gender equality and philanthropy.

This report will explore key themes and topics from each of those four conversations

Conversation 1: Building Strong & Resilient Movements
Conversation 2: Preventing and Decreasing Gender-based violence
Conversation 3: Feminist Action for Climate Justice
Conversation 4: Transforming Economic Justice

CONVERSATION 1

Building Strong & Resilient Movements

SPEAKER

Kavita Ramdas, CEO & President, Nathan Cummings Foundation

MODERATOR

Michelle Milford Morse, Vice President, Women and Girls Strategy, UN Foundation

SPEAKER

Kavita Ramdas, CEO & President, Nathan Cummings Foundation

MODERATOR

Michelle Milford Morse, Vice President, Women and Girls Strategy, UN Foundation

$0bn

Commitment by The Generation Equality Forum, goes a long way in closing the gender inequality gap

CONVERSATION 1

The Generation Equality Forum (GEF) marks the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Platform for Action: a landmark moment in the movement for gender equality. The commitments that came from Beijing were a result of decades-long work by women’s rights groups all over the world to push governments to acknowledge the inequality women face, that women's rights were human rights, and to make concrete commitments to make progress toward achieving gender equality.

While the Platform kicked-off important public rhetoric on gender equality that remains today, the lack of action by governments to translate those discussions into concrete, transformative commitments have enabled the gender inequality gap to grow. Stalling progress has been the chronic under-resourcing of feminist-led organizations and movements.

The Generation Equality Forum (GEF) marks the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Platform for Action: a landmark moment in the movement for gender equality. The commitments that came from Beijing were a result of decades-long work by women’s rights groups all over the world to push governments to acknowledge the inequality women face, that women's rights were human rights, and to make concrete commitments to make progress toward achieving gender equality.

While the Platform kicked-off important public rhetoric on gender equality that remains today, the lack of action by governments to translate those discussions into concrete, transformative commitments have enabled the gender inequality gap to grow. Stalling progress has been the chronic under-resourcing of feminist-led organizations and movements.

If properly resourced, these movements leaders and organizations can play an important role in demanding greater accountability and transparency, expanding decision-making tables, and catalyzing collective action for gender equality and human rights for all. The commitment of $40 billion to gender equality at GEF is an important step forward, but as the leaders who participated in this important conversation acknowledged, we must do more to ensure we accelerate progress toward a gender-equal world.

READ MORE

CONVERSATION 1

Gendered Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the systemic inequalities women face every day in countries worldwide, threatening their safety, health, and economic opportunity. The data is sobering. While women held 39 per cent of the world’s jobs before the pandemic struck, they represent 54 per cent of its losses, making women’s jobs almost twice as insecure as men’s. Alongside this rising economic uncertainty, women are shouldering the increased burden of caregiving responsibilities, forcing women out of the workforce in record-breaking numbers. All told, these reversals are estimated to cost women $800 billion in earnings. Compounded by the fact that women were already disproportionately affected by low wages, discrimination, and exploitation, we are living through the biggest crisis for women in our collective memory.

The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the systemic inequalities women face every day in countries worldwide, threatening their safety, health, and economic opportunity. The data is sobering. While women held 39 per cent of the world’s jobs before the pandemic struck, they represent 54 per cent of its losses, making women’s jobs almost twice as insecure as men’s. Alongside this rising economic uncertainty, women are shouldering the increased burden of caregiving responsibilities, forcing women out of the workforce in record-breaking numbers. All told, these reversals are estimated to cost women $800 billion in earnings. Compounded by the fact that women were already disproportionately affected by low wages, discrimination, and exploitation, we are living through the biggest crisis for women in our collective memory.

Kavita Ramdas elevated the burden of care many women experienced during the pandemic noting, “The pandemic was as much a crisis of health as it was a ‘crisis of care.” With approximately 740 million women working in the informal economy, Ramdas highlighted how reliant many nations were on women’s free and oftentimes invisible labor, and just how unprepared they were to deal with this invisible work being made visible.

The pandemic has also shone a bright light on the triple duty role that women play in leading local grassroots efforts. Whether it be responding to climate disasters, health crises, food insecurity, or violence prevention, women are on the frontlines advocating for the health and wellbeing of their families and communities. The case for more sustainable funding for these local advocates and activists has never been greater.

READ MORE

“The ‘defined and directed’ approach to giving to women and girls does not allow for trust to be built”

CONVERSATION 1

How We Fund Feminist Movements Matters

The traditional approaches to philanthropy that we have leaned upon to address our greatest challenges have proven insufficient. As Latanya Mapp-Frett notes, it challenged how philanthropy had been done for decades: “for a long time, philanthropy has been replicating some of the dynamics we often criticize, including top-down giving or North-South approaches”. This important conversation centered around how we cannot solve our current problems with the same approaches and tools that have brought us to where we are today. We must chart a different path.

The traditional approaches to philanthropy that we have leaned upon to address our greatest challenges have proven insufficient. As Latanya Mapp-Frett notes, it challenged how philanthropy had been done for decades: “for a long time, philanthropy has been replicating some of the dynamics we often criticize, including top-down giving or North-South approaches”. This important conversation centered around how we cannot solve our current problems with the same approaches and tools that have brought us to where we are today. We must chart a different path.

How we fund the movement for gender equality and women’s rights matters. The speakers pointed to feminist philanthropy as offering a path forward - one that the broader philanthropic sector should emulate. Challenging the power structures that have led to systemic oppression and exploitation, recognizing the complex and intersecting factors that marginalized communities face, breaking silos to work across issues and movements, rooting the work in the spirit of partnership, humility and trust, feminist philanthropists understand the need to redistribute power and to be more proximate.

Trusted based, flexible, and unrestricted should be the gold standard. Mapp-Frett described how the Global Fund for Women modelled this best practice and adapted during the pandemic. Rather than insisting grantees continue with their original plans, the Fund advised partners to redistribute funds to meet the moment. This approach required a move toward models of trust-based philanthropy and acknowledged that grantee partners are the best advocates of how to direct funds.

READ MORE

Within global philanthropic funding, women and girls’ organizations are still receiving less than

0%

CONVERSATION 1

Path to Achieving a Gender Equal World

Delivering on the promise of a more inclusive, equitable world faces many obstacles today with voting rights, reproductive choice, LGBTQ rights, and climate protections under threat. The movements for racial and gender justice, and the leaders steering them, are in the best position to prevent this backsliding. By making long-term, transformative investments in movement-building strategies, infrastructure, and leadership, these leaders can build the necessary capacity to confront the structural and cultural impediments to realizing equality. They can ensure the communities they represent have a seat at decision-making tables where policies and priorities are set and hold public institutions and the private sector accountable.

Delivering on the promise of a more inclusive, equitable world faces many obstacles today with voting rights, reproductive choice, LGBTQ rights, and climate protections under threat. The movements for racial and gender justice, and the leaders steering them, are in the best position to prevent this backsliding. By making long-term, transformative investments in movement-building strategies, infrastructure, and leadership, these leaders can build the necessary capacity to confront the structural and cultural impediments to realizing equality. They can ensure the communities they represent have a seat at decision-making tables where policies and priorities are set and hold public institutions and the private sector accountable.

It is easy to think of movements as spontaneous eruptions of activism that change hearts and minds in a moment. But those seemingly spontaneous eruptions are actually the product of an extraordinary effort by those who've worked tirelessly for years or even decades to assemble the core elements of movements: building constituencies, garnering support for policy frameworks, lobbying, developing research and leadership pipelines, winning elections, and shaping public consciousness.

The movement for women’s rights continues to gather strength, dedicating itself to the work of equality with renewed focus, energy, and drive. GEF is evidence of this momentum, despite the challenges of the moment. “Movements such as Black Lives Matter, the Green movement in Latin America, and #MeToo are making seismic shifts in society,” said Mapp-Frett emphasizing that achieving a gender-equal world will require a historic level of focus and financing.

As we look to the future, progress will be won by making bold, transformative movement building. Today’s philanthropists must rise to the challenge placed before them and give boldly to get equal.

READ MORE

CONVERSATION 1

The Generation Equality Forum (GEF) marks the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Platform for Action: a landmark moment in the movement for gender equality. The commitments that came from Beijing were a result of decades-long work by women’s rights groups all over the world to push governments to acknowledge the inequality women face, that women's rights were human rights, and to make concrete commitments to make progress toward achieving gender equality.

The Generation Equality Forum (GEF) marks the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Platform for Action: a landmark moment in the movement for gender equality. The commitments that came from Beijing were a result of decades-long work by women’s rights groups all over the world to push governments to acknowledge the inequality women face, that women's rights were human rights, and to make concrete commitments to make progress toward achieving gender equality.

While the Platform kicked-off important public rhetoric on gender equality that remains today, the lack of action by governments to translate those discussions into concrete, transformative commitments have enabled the gender inequality gap to grow. Stalling progress has been the chronic under-resourcing of feminist-led organizations and movements.

If properly resourced, these movements leaders and organizations can play an important role in demanding greater accountability and transparency, expanding decision-making tables, and catalyzing collective action for gender equality and human rights for all. The commitment of $40 billion to gender equality at GEF is an important step forward, but as the leaders who participated in this important conversation acknowledged, we must do more to ensure we accelerate progress toward a gender-equal world.

READ MORE

CONVERSATION 1

Gendered Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the systemic inequalities women face every day in countries worldwide, threatening their safety, health, and economic opportunity.

The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the systemic inequalities women face every day in countries worldwide, threatening their safety, health, and economic opportunity. The data is sobering. While women held 39 per cent of the world’s jobs before the pandemic struck, they represent 54 per cent of its losses, making women’s jobs almost twice as insecure as men’s. Alongside this rising economic uncertainty, women are shouldering the increased burden of caregiving responsibilities, forcing women out of the workforce in record-breaking numbers. All told, these reversals are estimated to cost women $800 billion in earnings. Compounded by the fact that women were already disproportionately affected by low wages, discrimination, and exploitation, we are living through the biggest crisis for women in our collective memory.

Kavita Ramdas elevated the burden of care many women experienced during the pandemic noting, “The pandemic was as much a crisis of health as it was a ‘crisis of care.” With approximately 740 million women working in the informal economy, Ramdas highlighted how reliant many nations were on women’s free and oftentimes invisible labor, and just how unprepared they were to deal with this invisible work being made visible.

The pandemic has also shone a bright light on the triple duty role that women play in leading local grassroots efforts. Whether it be responding to climate disasters, health crises, food insecurity, or violence prevention, women are on the frontlines advocating for the health and wellbeing of their families and communities. The case for more sustainable funding for these local advocates and activists has never been greater.

READ MORE

CONVERSATION 1

How We Fund Feminist Movements Matters

The traditional approaches to philanthropy that we have leaned upon to address our greatest challenges have proven insufficient.

The traditional approaches to philanthropy that we have leaned upon to address our greatest challenges have proven insufficient. As Latanya Mapp-Frett notes, it challenged how philanthropy had been done for decades: “for a long time, philanthropy has been replicating some of the dynamics we often criticize, including top-down giving or North-South approaches”. This important conversation centered around how we cannot solve our current problems with the same approaches and tools that have brought us to where we are today. We must chart a different path.

How we fund the movement for gender equality and women’s rights matters. The speakers pointed to feminist philanthropy as offering a path forward - one that the broader philanthropic sector should emulate. Challenging the power structures that have led to systemic oppression and exploitation, recognizing the complex and intersecting factors that marginalized communities face, breaking silos to work across issues and movements, rooting the work in the spirit of partnership, humility and trust, feminist philanthropists understand the need to redistribute power and to be more proximate.

Trusted based, flexible, and unrestricted should be the gold standard. Mapp-Frett described how the Global Fund for Women modelled this best practice and adapted during the pandemic. Rather than insisting grantees continue with their original plans, the Fund advised partners to redistribute funds to meet the moment. This approach required a move toward models of trust-based philanthropy and acknowledged that grantee partners are the best advocates of how to direct funds.

READ MORE

“The ‘defined and directed’ approach to giving to women and girls does not allow for trust to be built”

CONVERSATION 1

Path to Achieving a Gender Equal World

Delivering on the promise of a more inclusive, equitable world faces many obstacles today with voting rights, reproductive choice, LGBTQ rights, and climate protections under threat.

Delivering on the promise of a more inclusive, equitable world faces many obstacles today with voting rights, reproductive choice, LGBTQ rights, and climate protections under threat. The movements for racial and gender justice, and the leaders steering them, are in the best position to prevent this backsliding. By making long-term, transformative investments in movement-building strategies, infrastructure, and leadership, these leaders can build the necessary capacity to confront the structural and cultural impediments to realizing equality. They can ensure the communities they represent have a seat at decision-making tables where policies and priorities are set and hold public institutions and the private sector accountable.

It is easy to think of movements as spontaneous eruptions of activism that change hearts and minds in a moment. But those seemingly spontaneous eruptions are actually the product of an extraordinary effort by those who've worked tirelessly for years or even decades to assemble the core elements of movements: building constituencies, garnering support for policy frameworks, lobbying, developing research and leadership pipelines, winning elections, and shaping public consciousness.

The movement for women’s rights continues to gather strength, dedicating itself to the work of equality with renewed focus, energy, and drive. GEF is evidence of this momentum, despite the challenges of the moment. “Movements such as Black Lives Matter, the Green movement in Latin America, and #MeToo are making seismic shifts in society,” said Mapp-Frett emphasizing that achieving a gender-equal world will require a historic level of focus and financing.

As we look to the future, progress will be won by making bold, transformative movement building. Today’s philanthropists must rise to the challenge placed before them and give boldly to get equal.

READ MORE

Within global philanthropic funding, women and girls’ organizations are still receiving less than

7%

CONVERSATION 1

$40bn

Commitment by The Generation Equality Forum, goes a long way in closing the gender inequality gap.

Building Strong & Resilient Movements

IN NUMBERS

<2%

of philanthropic funding in the US goes to gender equality efforts.

$800bn

COVID-19 cost women globally over $800 billion in lost income in one year.

740m

women working in the informal economy.

CONVERSATION 2

Preventing and Decreasing Gender-Based Violence

SPEAKER

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, UN Under-Secretary-General & Executive Director, UN Women

MODERATOR

Theo Sowa, Independent Advisor, Feminist Activist & Co-Chair, Equality Fund.

SPEAKER

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, UN Under-Secretary-General & Executive Director, UN Women

MODERATOR

Theo Sowa, Independent Advisor, Feminist Activist & Co-Chair, Equality Fund.

CONVERSATION 2

A global epidemic, gender-based violence is one of the greatest barriers to realizing gender equality. One in three women has been subject to intimate partner violence and/or non-partner sexual violence in their life. The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have only intensified the crisis of violence against women and girls, with many dubbing it the ‘shadow pandemic’.

A global epidemic, gender-based violence is one of the greatest barriers to realizing gender equality. One in three women has been subject to intimate partner violence and/or non-partner sexual violence in their life. The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have only intensified the crisis of violence against women and girls, with many dubbing it the ‘shadow pandemic’.

Generation Equality Forum’s coalition to end gender-based violence calls upon the engagement of multiple stakeholders, including government, civil society, private sector, and philanthropy to prevent and eliminate gender-based violence. The coalition advocates for the strengthening and implementation of laws and policies to increase accountability and access to justice for survivors; scaling up evidence-based programs; expanding quality access to survivor-centered services, and greater financing for organizations to drive transformational change to end gender-based violence.

READ MORE

“...we need to also change the hearts and minds of people who create the ecosystem around women and girls”

CONVERSATION 2

Getting to the root of the problem

There is no “quick fix” to ending gender-based violence. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka addressed the need to get to the root of the problem by changing people’s hearts and minds, particularly that of men and boys, and challenging outdated perspectives at all levels of society. She pointed to UN Women’s RESPECT framework for challenging violence against women. This framework calls for actions that strengthen relationships, empower women, ensure services are resourced to support victims, reduce poverty, create safe environments, prevent child and adolescent abuse, and transform attitudes, beliefs and norms. She noted that this integrated, systems-based approach is essential to the realization of a gender-equal world that is safe and equitable for all.

There is no “quick fix” to ending gender-based violence. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka addressed the need to get to the root of the problem by changing people’s hearts and minds, particularly that of men and boys, and challenging outdated perspectives at all levels of society. She pointed to UN Women’s RESPECT framework for challenging violence against women. This framework calls for actions that strengthen relationships, empower women, ensure services are resourced to support victims, reduce poverty, create safe environments, prevent child and adolescent abuse, and transform attitudes, beliefs and norms. She noted that this integrated, systems-based approach is essential to the realization of a gender-equal world that is safe and equitable for all.

Sohini Bhattacharya pointed to the need of the philanthropic sector to invest in work that shifts social norms - the attitudes and belief systems of individuals and institutions. “True change won’t just come from giving girls more opportunities or building infrastructure….we need to also change the hearts and minds of people who create the ecosystem around women and girls,” said Bhattacharya.

Bhattacharya also points to the need for greater intergenerational collaboration of young people to co-create solutions to gender-based violence. “We move from ‘me’ to ‘we’ and instil leadership early”, noted Bhattacharya, and highlighted the critical role many of the young leaders of Breakthrough’s India program played to support their communities during last year’s severe lockdown.

READ MORE

CONVERSATION 2

Partnerships that Drive Hope & Solutions

Finding solutions to gender-based violence requires strong and enduring partnerships between governments, civil society, and the private sector. “Instead of working in silos, everyone needs to come together in a collaborative model in order for actions to work. Otherwise, we will never see the impact we want to see”, said Bhattacharya. UN Women has expanded who they partner with to include the private sector and philanthropic organizations, both of which have brought new energy and resources to address gender inequality.

Finding solutions to gender-based violence requires strong and enduring partnerships between governments, civil society, and the private sector. “Instead of working in silos, everyone needs to come together in a collaborative model in order for actions to work. Otherwise, we will never see the impact we want to see”, said Bhattacharya. UN Women has expanded who they partner with to include the private sector and philanthropic organizations, both of which have brought new energy and resources to address gender inequality.

The private sector has an important role to play in gender-based violence prevention and response, including financing and setting norms and policies that tackle gender-based violence and harassment. Partnerships must balance corporate needs with values with Mlambo-Ngcuka highlighting the need for companies to set a standard from the top-down of accountability when it comes to dealing with perpetrators of violence.

Strategic engagement with individual governments is also a key part of the implementation of GEF’s set of actions to deliver transformational change. “In every country, we need to sensitise and develop the capacity of policymakers to understand the impact of the patriarchy and move towards gender-equal views together,” said Bhattacharya. Changing laws and policies, improving data collection, strengthening the ecosystem of organizations and institutions providing services, and bridging the financial gap are all seen as critical roles governments can play.

READ MORE

“We want to make violence against women and girls everyone’s problem because if we don’t, we will never achieve gender equality”

CONVERSATION 2

Investing for Real Change

Violence intersects and exacerbates many of the other issues facing women and girls, whether it’s poverty, food insecurity, or health. That’s why it is crucial that it be high up on the list of funders priorities: “We want to make violence against women and girls everyone’s problem because if we don’t, we will never achieve gender equality,” said Bhattacharya.

Violence intersects and exacerbates many of the other issues facing women and girls, whether it’s poverty, food insecurity, or health. That’s why it is crucial that it be high up on the list of funders priorities: “We want to make violence against women and girls everyone’s problem because if we don’t, we will never achieve gender equality,” said Bhattacharya.

While evidence of the types of responses that work is well documented, as it stands, according to Sawa, “we still seem to fund a lot of work that is on the surface but that doesn’t actually promote real change”. This is often down to the type of funding needed to support solutions to violence. “Preventative initiatives take five to ten years to show impact so we need to find philanthropists who are patient”, said Bhattacharya, stressing long-term, flexible funding as being critical for real transformation to occur.

READ MORE

CONVERSATION 2

A global epidemic, gender-based violence is one of the greatest barriers to realizing gender equality. One in three women has been subject to intimate partner violence and/or non-partner sexual violence in their life. The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have only intensified the crisis of violence against women and girls, with many dubbing it the ‘shadow pandemic’.

A global epidemic, gender-based violence is one of the greatest barriers to realizing gender equality. One in three women has been subject to intimate partner violence and/or non-partner sexual violence in their life. The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have only intensified the crisis of violence against women and girls, with many dubbing it the ‘shadow pandemic’.

Generation Equality Forum’s coalition to end gender-based violence calls upon the engagement of multiple stakeholders, including government, civil society, private sector, and philanthropy to prevent and eliminate gender-based violence. The coalition advocates for the strengthening and implementation of laws and policies to increase accountability and access to justice for survivors; scaling up evidence-based programs; expanding quality access to survivor-centered services, and greater financing for organizations to drive transformational change to end gender-based violence.

READ MORE

CONVERSATION 2

Getting to the root of the problem

There is no “quick fix” to ending gender-based violence. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka addressed the need to get to the root of the problem by changing people’s hearts and minds, particularly that of men and boys, and challenging outdated perspectives at all levels of society.

There is no “quick fix” to ending gender-based violence. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka addressed the need to get to the root of the problem by changing people’s hearts and minds, particularly that of men and boys, and challenging outdated perspectives at all levels of society. She pointed to UN Women’s RESPECT framework for challenging violence against women. This framework calls for actions that strengthen relationships, empower women, ensure services are resourced to support victims, reduce poverty, create safe environments, prevent child and adolescent abuse, and transform attitudes, beliefs and norms. She noted that this integrated, systems-based approach is essential to the realization of a gender-equal world that is safe and equitable for all.

Sohini Bhattacharya pointed to the need of the philanthropic sector to invest in work that shifts social norms - the attitudes and belief systems of individuals and institutions. “True change won’t just come from giving girls more opportunities or building infrastructure….we need to also change the hearts and minds of people who create the ecosystem around women and girls,” said Bhattacharya.

Bhattacharya also points to the need for greater intergenerational collaboration of young people to co-create solutions to gender-based violence. “We move from ‘me’ to ‘we’ and instil leadership early”, noted Bhattacharya, and highlighted the critical role many of the young leaders of Breakthrough’s India program played to support their communities during last year’s severe lockdown.

READ MORE

“...WE NEED TO ALSO CHANGE THE HEARTS AND MINDS OF PEOPLE WHO CREATE THE ECOSYSTEM AROUND WOMEN AND GIRLS”

CONVERSATION 2

Partnerships that Drive Hope & Solutions

Finding solutions to gender-based violence requires strong and enduring partnerships between governments, civil society, and the private sector.

Finding solutions to gender-based violence requires strong and enduring partnerships between governments, civil society, and the private sector. “Instead of working in silos, everyone needs to come together in a collaborative model in order for actions to work. Otherwise, we will never see the impact we want to see”, said Bhattacharya. UN Women has expanded who they partner with to include the private sector and philanthropic organizations, both of which have brought new energy and resources to address gender inequality.

The private sector has an important role to play in gender-based violence prevention and response, including financing and setting norms and policies that tackle gender-based violence and harassment. Partnerships must balance corporate needs with values with Mlambo-Ngcuka highlighting the need for companies to set a standard from the top-down of accountability when it comes to dealing with perpetrators of violence.

Strategic engagement with individual governments is also a key part of the implementation of GEF’s set of actions to deliver transformational change. “In every country, we need to sensitise and develop the capacity of policymakers to understand the impact of the patriarchy and move towards gender-equal views together,” said Bhattacharya. Changing laws and policies, improving data collection, strengthening the ecosystem of organizations and institutions providing services, and bridging the financial gap are all seen as critical roles governments can play.

READ MORE

CONVERSATION 2

CONVERSATION 2

Investing for Real Change

Violence intersects and exacerbates many of the other issues facing women and girls, whether it’s poverty, food insecurity, or health. That’s why it is crucial that it be high up on the list of funders priorities:

Violence intersects and exacerbates many of the other issues facing women and girls, whether it’s poverty, food insecurity, or health. That’s why it is crucial that it be high up on the list of funders priorities: “We want to make violence against women and girls everyone’s problem because if we don’t, we will never achieve gender equality,” said Bhattacharya.

While evidence of the types of responses that work is well documented, as it stands, according to Sawa, “we still seem to fund a lot of work that is on the surface but that doesn’t actually promote real change”. This is often down to the type of funding needed to support solutions to violence. “Preventative initiatives take five to ten years to show impact so we need to find philanthropists who are patient”, said Bhattacharya, stressing long-term, flexible funding as being critical for real transformation to occur.

READ MORE

“WE WANT TO MAKE VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN AND GIRLS EVERYONE’S PROBLEM BECAUSE IF WE DON’T, WE WILL NEVER ACHIEVE GENDER EQUALITY”

CONVERSATION 2

Preventing and Decreasing Gender-Based Violence

IN NUMBERS

1 IN 3

women has been subject to intimate partner violence and/or non-partner sexual violence in their life.

FIVE-FOLD

increase in calls to domestic abuse helplines during the COVID-19 pandemic.

<40%

of the women who experience violence globally seek help of any sort.

CONVERSATION 3

Feminist Action for Climate Justice

SPEAKER

Laura Garcia, President & CEO, Global Greengrants Fund

SPEAKER

Mary Robinson, Former President of Ireland

MODERATOR

Pat Mitchell, Editorial Director, TEDWOMEN

SPEAKER

Laura Garcia, President & CEO, Global Greengrants Fund

SPEAKER

Mary Robinson, Former President of Ireland

MODERATOR

Pat Mitchell, Editorial Director, TEDWOMEN

0%

of International Monetary Fund and World Bank board members are female

CONVERSATION 3

Women and girls have always been at the forefront of movements demanding climate and environmental justice, but have largely been underrepresented in advancing climate justice across all levels and sectors. If we are to tackle climate change, then we need to center gender in climate actions and drive greater investment to address the persistent, structural barriers that have left women and girls at risk.

Women and girls have always been at the forefront of movements demanding climate and environmental justice, but have largely been underrepresented in advancing climate justice across all levels and sectors. If we are to tackle climate change, then we need to center gender in climate actions and drive greater investment to address the persistent, structural barriers that have left women and girls at risk.

If we are to tackle climate change, the global community needs to work to center and amplify the voices of grassroots leaders and indigenous communities, meaningfully include women and girls in decision-making processes at all levels, and drive investment in gender-just climate solutions. Advancing equality for all women and girls in their full diversity will strengthen our collective ability to tackle the climate crisis.

READ MORE

“What the climate movement is missing is the imagination and hope of those who have been oppressed by current systems”

CONVERSATION 3

Centering Gender in Climate Justice

“Climate justice is the mother of all issues,” said Pat Mitchell and taking action demands us to not only come up with temporary solutions but to think about how to transform systems to be more just and equitable for everyone. This is the defining crux of climate justice: “climate justice is the lens that lets us think about the climate as a personal issue for everyone around the world, no matter who they are” said Mary Robinson.

“Climate justice is the mother of all issues,” said Pat Mitchell and taking action demands us to not only come up with temporary solutions but to think about how to transform systems to be more just and equitable for everyone. This is the defining crux of climate justice: “climate justice is the lens that lets us think about the climate as a personal issue for everyone around the world, no matter who they are” said Mary Robinson.

While women contribute less overall to the climate crisis, they are disproportionately burdened by its effects making the issues of and solutions for gender equality and climate intertwined. These burdens include displacement, increased homelessness, food insecurity, vulnerability to disease, and violence. These vulnerabilities produce chronic insecurity, which along with deeply entrenched gender roles, leaves women less empowered to drive solutions. The COVID-19 pandemic has only exacerbated these inequities.

The speakers also acknowledged that not all women are impacted equally and that lower-income, Global South and Indigenous communities are most at risk from the immediate and longer-term impacts of climate change. Investments in climate justice must center the needs of those most marginalized and impacted.

READ MORE

CONVERSATION 3

Feminist Leadership on Climate Action

“What the climate movement is missing is the imagination and hope of those who have been oppressed by current systems who can think about alternate systems because they have to”, said Laura Garcia. Garcia further advocated for greater investment in those leaders on the frontlines of the climate crisis who are best placed to imagine and organize around climate solutions that actually work for communities at the grassroots level.

“What the climate movement is missing is the imagination and hope of those who have been oppressed by current systems who can think about alternate systems because they have to”, said Laura Garcia. Garcia further advocated for greater investment in those leaders on the frontlines of the climate crisis who are best placed to imagine and organize around climate solutions that actually work for communities at the grassroots level.

Seeing real solutions being put forward to reduce the impacts of climate change requires bringing together grassroots organizations with bigger, more powerful players to form alliances. “We need to connect women who have a seat at the table with women whose voices need to be heard,” said Robinson, calling for the inclusion of young women and indigenous women in these important discussions so they can bring the urgent on-the-ground perspective to policy tables and other networks of women leaders who can influence priorities and decisions.

Robinson stressed the importance of supporting and giving space to the next generation of women leaders, noting, “the climate crisis is an inequitable generational issue”. Young people’s participation in climate decisions or talks, particularly those from the Global South, is a hugely talked about topic but the reality is that many young people are unable to join due to financial and bureaucratic barriers. The philanthropic sector can play a role to ensure young people and indigenous leaders have the capital to travel and participate in important gatherings.

READ MORE

Less than

1%

of the money for climate justice goes towards women’s organizations

CONVERSATION 3

Investing in the right solutions

It is not enough to have women involved in or leaders of climate movements, there needs to be a shift in how capital is moving. “Less than 1% of the money for climate justice goes towards women’s organizations,” said Garcia.

It is not enough to have women involved in or leaders of climate movements, there needs to be a shift in how capital is moving. “Less than 1% of the money for climate justice goes towards women’s organizations,” said Garcia. To see intersectional and transformative changes to climate action agendas, philanthropists need to identify feminist groups that are already working in the climate space and channel resources to support their work. “There is a huge difference between funding groups that just happen to be led or integrated by women, to groups that work with a gender perspective to address environmental justice, and feminist groups that incorporate a feminist agenda in climate justice narratives, negotiations and spaces,” Garcia said.

READ MORE

“This year and the decade that follows is the most important in the whole history of humanity”

CONVERSATION 3

Creating a Ripple Effect

“This year and the decade that follows is the most important in the whole history of humanity,” said Robinson, encouraging everyone to take part and noting that we are already seeing promising moves.

“This year and the decade that follows is the most important in the whole history of humanity,” said Robinson, encouraging everyone to take part and noting that we are already seeing promising moves. Big finance has taken on more responsibility around accountability and we are seeing a move towards divesting. As we witnessed at the most recent COP26, young activists, indigenous leaders, and citizens across the world are exercising their democratic right to protest, placing pressure on nations and businesses to act now to secure a safe future for generations to come. Investing in women and girls is one of the most effective ways to ensure continued progress and to create a positive “ripple effect” in the communities globally.

READ MORE

CONVERSATION 3

Women and girls have always been at the forefront of movements demanding climate and environmental justice, but have largely been underrepresented in advancing climate justice across all levels and sectors. If we are to tackle climate change, then we need to center gender in climate actions and drive greater investment to address the persistent, structural barriers that have left women and girls at risk.

Women and girls have always been at the forefront of movements demanding climate and environmental justice, but have largely been underrepresented in advancing climate justice across all levels and sectors. If we are to tackle climate change, then we need to center gender in climate actions and drive greater investment to address the persistent, structural barriers that have left women and girls at risk.

If we are to tackle climate change, the global community needs to work to center and amplify the voices of grassroots leaders and indigenous communities, meaningfully include women and girls in decision-making processes at all levels, and drive investment in gender-just climate solutions. Advancing equality for all women and girls in their full diversity will strengthen our collective ability to tackle the climate crisis.

READ MORE

CONVERSATION 3

Centering Gender in Climate Justice

“Climate justice is the mother of all issues,” said Pat Mitchell and taking action demands us to not only come up with temporary solutions but to think about how to transform systems to be more just and equitable for everyone.

“Climate justice is the mother of all issues,” said Pat Mitchell and taking action demands us to not only come up with temporary solutions but to think about how to transform systems to be more just and equitable for everyone. This is the defining crux of climate justice: “climate justice is the lens that lets us think about the climate as a personal issue for everyone around the world, no matter who they are” said Mary Robinson.

While women contribute less overall to the climate crisis, they are disproportionately burdened by its effects making the issues of and solutions for gender equality and climate intertwined. These burdens include displacement, increased homelessness, food insecurity, vulnerability to disease, and violence. These vulnerabilities produce chronic insecurity, which along with deeply entrenched gender roles, leaves women less empowered to drive solutions. The COVID-19 pandemic has only exacerbated these inequities.

The speakers also acknowledged that not all women are impacted equally and that lower-income, Global South and Indigenous communities are most at risk from the immediate and longer-term impacts of climate change. Investments in climate justice must center the needs of those most marginalized and impacted.

READ MORE

“What the climate movement is missing is the imagination and hope of those who have been oppressed by current systems”

CONVERSATION 3

Feminist Leadership on Climate Action

“What the climate movement is missing is the imagination and hope of those who have been oppressed by current systems who can think about alternate systems because they have to”

“What the climate movement is missing is the imagination and hope of those who have been oppressed by current systems who can think about alternate systems because they have to”, said Laura Garcia. Garcia further advocated for greater investment in those leaders on the frontlines of the climate crisis who are best placed to imagine and organize around climate solutions that actually work for communities at the grassroots level.

Seeing real solutions being put forward to reduce the impacts of climate change requires bringing together grassroots organizations with bigger, more powerful players to form alliances. “We need to connect women who have a seat at the table with women whose voices need to be heard,” said Robinson, calling for the inclusion of young women and indigenous women in these important discussions so they can bring the urgent on-the-ground perspective to policy tables and other networks of women leaders who can influence priorities and decisions.

Robinson stressed the importance of supporting and giving space to the next generation of women leaders, noting, “the climate crisis is an inequitable generational issue”. Young people’s participation in climate decisions or talks, particularly those from the Global South, is a hugely talked about topic but the reality is that many young people are unable to join due to financial and bureaucratic barriers. The philanthropic sector can play a role to ensure young people and indigenous leaders have the capital to travel and participate in important gatherings.

READ MORE

CONVERSATION 3

Investing in the right solutions

It is not enough to have women involved in or leaders of climate movements, there needs to be a shift in how capital is moving.

It is not enough to have women involved in or leaders of climate movements, there needs to be a shift in how capital is moving. “Less than 1% of the money for climate justice goes towards women’s organizations,” said Garcia. To see intersectional and transformative changes to climate action agendas, philanthropists need to identify feminist groups that are already working in the climate space and channel resources to support their work. “There is a huge difference between funding groups that just happen to be led or integrated by women, to groups that work with a gender perspective to address environmental justice, and feminist groups that incorporate a feminist agenda in climate justice narratives, negotiations and spaces,” Garcia said.

READ MORE

Less than

1%

of the money for climate justice goes towards women’s organizations

CONVERSATION 3

Creating a Ripple Effect

“This year and the decade that follows is the most important in the whole history of humanity,” said Robinson, encouraging everyone to take part and noting that we are already seeing promising moves.

“This year and the decade that follows is the most important in the whole history of humanity,” said Robinson, encouraging everyone to take part and noting that we are already seeing promising moves. Big finance has taken on more responsibility around accountability and we are seeing a move towards divesting. As we witnessed at the most recent COP26, young activists, indigenous leaders, and citizens across the world are exercising their democratic right to protest, placing pressure on nations and businesses to act now to secure a safe future for generations to come. Investing in women and girls is one of the most effective ways to ensure continued progress and to create a positive “ripple effect” in the communities globally.

READ MORE

“THIS YEAR AND THE DECADE THAT FOLLOWS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT IN THE WHOLE HISTORY OF HUMANITY”

CONVERSATION 3

1%

of International Monetary Fund and World Bank board members are female

Feminist Action for Climate Justice

IN NUMBERS

0%

of people displaced by climate change are women.

ONLY 0%

of all national parliamentarians are women.

<0%

of the money for climate justice goes towards women’s organizations.

CONVERSATION 4

Transforming Economic Justice to advance Gender Equality

SPEAKER

Ann Cairns, Executive Vice-Chair at Mastercard

SPEAKER

Rosita Najmi, Head of Global Social Innovation at Paypal

MODERATOR

Rosie Campbell, Director at the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership at King’s College

SPEAKER

Ann Cairns, Executive Vice-Chair at Mastercard

SPEAKER

Rosita Najmi, Head of Global Social Innovation at Paypal

MODERATOR

Rosie Campbell, Director at the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership at King’s College

0%

of women identified an increase in caring duties such as childcare or looking after an elderly relative

CONVERSATION 4

Even before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, too many women and girls were left out and left behind in the global economic system, notably the 740 million women who work in the informal economy with few legal protections or job security. The pandemic has exacerbated these and myriad other vulnerabilities across the economy with devastating effects on women’s workforce participation.

Even before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, too many women and girls were left out and left behind in the global economic system, notably the 740 million women who work in the informal economy with few legal protections or job security. The pandemic has exacerbated these and myriad other vulnerabilities across the economy with devastating effects on women’s workforce participation.

Women make up 39 per cent of global employment but account for 54 per cent of overall pandemic job losses. An increase in unpaid care work, falling disproportionately to women, has also been a driver: a recent survey showed that 66 per cent of women identified an increase in caring duties such as childcare or looking after an elderly relative during the crisis. What was invisible–the underpinning of our economic systems provided by unpaid and undervalued women’s work across the globe–has been laid bare.

As we begin the process of recovery, there needs to be a concerted effort from governments and the private sector to close the economic gap that has widened as a result of the pandemic and ensure women and girls have full rights and access to economic opportunities. Much of the economic response packages put forward by governments to date have been ‘gender-blind’ and fail to address the specific needs of women.

Actions set out at GEF under the Action Coalition on Economic Justice and Rights have focused on creating an inclusive and enabling legal and policy environment that can lift women out of poverty and decrease the gap in labor force participation, ensuring women’s safety, health, and opportunity can be realized.

READ MORE

BARRIERS TO ECONOMIC JUSTICE FOR WOMEN:

INVISIBILITY

INCOME EQUALITY

TIME POVERTY

CONVERSATION 4

A Gendered Response to Economic Justice

Progress towards the elimination of the social, political, and economic systemic barriers to economic justice has stalled globally and been further exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Without a gendered response to addressing these barriers, we risk reversing much of the progress made to advance women and girls economic opportunities.

Progress towards the elimination of the social, political, and economic systemic barriers to economic justice has stalled globally and been further exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Without a gendered response to addressing these barriers, we risk reversing much of the progress made to advance women and girls economic opportunities.

Rosita Najmi presented three main barriers to economic justice for women: time poverty, income inequality, and invisibility. “It’s expensive to be poor,” she shares, “and it’s also expensive to be a woman.” To overcome these barriers, our speakers called for economic and political systems and structures to become gender-responsive and ensure equitable access to resources, services, and decision-making to name a few important steps. Access to capital is a particular issue for women in the Global South, with formal and informal barriers on the supply and demand side. Inclusive finance, practised in the private sector and backed by governments, must be delivered with a gender lens to address specific barriers faced by women in accessing loans and financing.

The pandemic has also shone a light on the world economy’s dependence upon the invisible and unpaid labor of women and girls. Women spend two to ten times more time on unpaid care than men and this has only increased with the pandemic– an enormous component of the time poverty cited by Najmi. Ann Cairns expressed that “many women have started to say they want to step back from the corporate world because they just can’t cope with the level of care they’ve had to do this year in addition to doing their day job.”

Underpinning all of these issues is the fact that much of women’s contribution and potential to the economy is invisible, from care work not counting towards household income measures or GDP, to the lack of gender-disaggregated data in much of economic analysis. As Cairns asserts, “If we have data, then we can start solving problems”.

READ MORE

“women in positions of power and wealth can use their influence to have a dramatic change in the world”

CONVERSATION 4

The Role of the Private Sector

Increasing jobs and reducing poverty is a role for the private sector and an area where they can have a lot of influence: “if you have power, influence and money, then what you can do is ask for more transparency”, said Cairns. Najmi echoed this call, asking individuals to map their spheres of influence and identify where you can take action and call for change, even in the face of systemic barriers. Cairns elaborates that “small groups of women in positions of power and wealth can use their influence to have a dramatic change in the world so it’s a question of deciding what your position is and what the change is that you want to make on a global scale”. Cairns cited how she used her leadership position to implement a shift in hiring policy practice that increased the representation of women leaders at the country level by 30 per cent.

Increasing jobs and reducing poverty is a role for the private sector and an area where they can have a lot of influence: “if you have power, influence and money, then what you can do is ask for more transparency”, said Cairns. Najmi echoed this call, asking individuals to map their spheres of influence and identify where you can take action and call for change, even in the face of systemic barriers. Cairns elaborates that “small groups of women in positions of power and wealth can use their influence to have a dramatic change in the world so it’s a question of deciding what your position is and what the change is that you want to make on a global scale”. Cairns cited how she used her leadership position to implement a shift in hiring policy practice that increased the representation of women leaders at the country level by 30 per cent.

The private sector can also flex its influence in the policy sphere. Najmi shared that Paypal lent its support for the renewal of the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act as a key component of protecting and ensuring women’s full workforce participation. Najmi also spoke of the need to shift the narrative to frame care and domestic work as part of our economic infrastructure, and the role of collective power in doing so. The transformation of the care economy is central to the Action Coalition recommendations, and achieving this will take both macro policy change and a shift in cultural narrative.

READ MORE

Only

1.9%

of the money going to support charities in the US are supporting gender equality outcomes

CONVERSATION 4

Linking Policy Changes with Philanthropic Investment

To achieve progress toward greater economic justice and inclusion, there needs to be a cultural shift. Civil society, businesses, and governments have to step back and build new contracts with each other. Responsibilities framed in the past as individual, private and personal, such as care in the early years of a child’s life, need to be seen as the economic realities they are, necessitating employer and government involvement. Cairns noted that there is perhaps no more transformative investment we can make for women’s economic progress than childcare. Paid leave and affordable, high-quality child care not only impact a woman’s workforce participation in the short term, but they drive her economic stability in the long term. “The pension gap is absolutely huge for women,” Cairns said, sharing further analysis that showed $173 trillion were lost in lifetime earnings globally due to taking leave.

To achieve progress toward greater economic justice and inclusion, there needs to be a cultural shift. Civil society, businesses, and governments have to step back and build new contracts with each other. Responsibilities framed in the past as individual, private and personal, such as care in the early years of a child’s life, need to be seen as the economic realities they are, necessitating employer and government involvement. Cairns noted that there is perhaps no more transformative investment we can make for women’s economic progress than childcare. Paid leave and affordable, high-quality child care not only impact a woman’s workforce participation in the short term, but they drive her economic stability in the long term. “The pension gap is absolutely huge for women,” Cairns said, sharing further analysis that showed $173 trillion were lost in lifetime earnings globally due to taking leave.

While much of the economic policy shifts must happen at the government and enterprise level, philanthropy can embrace its highest purpose as risk capital to help demonstrate, pilot, and support new initiatives. From loan guarantee funds and inclusive finance strategies like those pioneered by Mastercard Foundation, to philanthropy-powered grassroots activism for paid leave policy change in the United States, philanthropy can, and should, push decision-makers on economic justice issues. Philanthropy can also back media and content which contribute to the narrative shift to elevate the care economy and create new economic opportunities for women.

Najmi validated the need for a marked increase in philanthropy funding for women as a Women and Girls index report shows that only 1.9 per cent of the money going to support charities in the US are supporting gender equality outcomes. She highlights also that there is often a gap between where funding is made and the initiatives that can have the biggest impact and evidence can help to close this gap, improving outcomes for everyone involved. The GEF Action Coalition’s intentional diversity and effort to include the voices of women across age and socio-economic status was a powerful example of how inclusive decision making can drive more effective change.

READ MORE

CONVERSATION 4

Even before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, too many women and girls were left out and left behind in the global economic system, notably the 740 million women who work in the informal economy with few legal protections or job security. The pandemic has exacerbated these and myriad other vulnerabilities across the economy with devastating effects on women’s workforce participation.

Even before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, too many women and girls were left out and left behind in the global economic system, notably the 740 million women who work in the informal economy with few legal protections or job security. The pandemic has exacerbated these and myriad other vulnerabilities across the economy with devastating effects on women’s workforce participation.

Women make up 39 per cent of global employment but account for 54 per cent of overall pandemic job losses. An increase in unpaid care work, falling disproportionately to women, has also been a driver: a recent survey showed that 66 per cent of women identified an increase in caring duties such as childcare or looking after an elderly relative during the crisis. What was invisible–the underpinning of our economic systems provided by unpaid and undervalued women’s work across the globe–has been laid bare.

As we begin the process of recovery, there needs to be a concerted effort from governments and the private sector to close the economic gap that has widened as a result of the pandemic and ensure women and girls have full rights and access to economic opportunities. Much of the economic response packages put forward by governments to date have been ‘gender-blind’ and fail to address the specific needs of women.

Actions set out at GEF under the Action Coalition on Economic Justice and Rights have focused on creating an inclusive and enabling legal and policy environment that can lift women out of poverty and decrease the gap in labor force participation, ensuring women’s safety, health, and opportunity can be realized.

READ MORE

CONVERSATION 4

A Gendered Response to Economic Justice

Progress towards the elimination of the social, political, and economic systemic barriers to economic justice has stalled globally and been further exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Progress towards the elimination of the social, political, and economic systemic barriers to economic justice has stalled globally and been further exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Without a gendered response to addressing these barriers, we risk reversing much of the progress made to advance women and girls economic opportunities.

Rosita Najmi presented three main barriers to economic justice for women: time poverty, income inequality, and invisibility. “It’s expensive to be poor,” she shares, “and it’s also expensive to be a woman.” To overcome these barriers, our speakers called for economic and political systems and structures to become gender-responsive and ensure equitable access to resources, services, and decision-making to name a few important steps. Access to capital is a particular issue for women in the Global South, with formal and informal barriers on the supply and demand side. Inclusive finance, practised in the private sector and backed by governments, must be delivered with a gender lens to address specific barriers faced by women in accessing loans and financing.

The pandemic has also shone a light on the world economy’s dependence upon the invisible and unpaid labor of women and girls. Women spend two to ten times more time on unpaid care than men and this has only increased with the pandemic– an enormous component of the time poverty cited by Najmi. Ann Cairns expressed that “many women have started to say they want to step back from the corporate world because they just can’t cope with the level of care they’ve had to do this year in addition to doing their day job.”

Underpinning all of these issues is the fact that much of women’s contribution and potential to the economy is invisible, from care work not counting towards household income measures or GDP, to the lack of gender-disaggregated data in much of economic analysis. As Cairns asserts, “If we have data, then we can start solving problems”.

READ MORE

BARRIERS TO ECONOMIC JUSTICE FOR WOMEN:

INVISIBILITY

INCOME EQUALITY

TIME POVERTY

CONVERSATION 4

The Role of the Private Sector

Increasing jobs and reducing poverty is a role for the private sector and an area where they can have a lot of influence: “if you have power, influence and money, then what you can do is ask for more transparency”, said Cairns.

Increasing jobs and reducing poverty is a role for the private sector and an area where they can have a lot of influence: “if you have power, influence and money, then what you can do is ask for more transparency”, said Cairns. Najmi echoed this call, asking individuals to map their spheres of influence and identify where you can take action and call for change, even in the face of systemic barriers. Cairns elaborates that “small groups of women in positions of power and wealth can use their influence to have a dramatic change in the world so it’s a question of deciding what your position is and what the change is that you want to make on a global scale”. Cairns cited how she used her leadership position to implement a shift in hiring policy practice that increased the representation of women leaders at the country level by 30 per cent.

The private sector can also flex its influence in the policy sphere. Najmi shared that Paypal lent its support for the renewal of the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act as a key component of protecting and ensuring women’s full workforce participation. Najmi also spoke of the need to shift the narrative to frame care and domestic work as part of our economic infrastructure, and the role of collective power in doing so. The transformation of the care economy is central to the Action Coalition recommendations, and achieving this will take both macro policy change and a shift in cultural narrative.

READ MORE

“WOMEN IN POSITIONS OF POWER AND WEALTH CAN USE THEIR INFLUENCE TO HAVE A DRAMATIC CHANGE IN THE WORLD”

CONVERSATION 4

Linking Policy Changes with Philanthropic Investment

To achieve progress toward greater economic justice and inclusion, there needs to be a cultural shift. Civil society, businesses, and governments have to step back and build new contracts with each other.

To achieve progress toward greater economic justice and inclusion, there needs to be a cultural shift. Civil society, businesses, and governments have to step back and build new contracts with each other. Responsibilities framed in the past as individual, private and personal, such as care in the early years of a child’s life, need to be seen as the economic realities they are, necessitating employer and government involvement. Cairns noted that there is perhaps no more transformative investment we can make for women’s economic progress than childcare. Paid leave and affordable, high-quality child care not only impact a woman’s workforce participation in the short term, but they drive her economic stability in the long term. “The pension gap is absolutely huge for women,” Cairns said, sharing further analysis that showed $173 trillion were lost in lifetime earnings globally due to taking leave.

While much of the economic policy shifts must happen at the government and enterprise level, philanthropy can embrace its highest purpose as risk capital to help demonstrate, pilot, and support new initiatives. From loan guarantee funds and inclusive finance strategies like those pioneered by Mastercard Foundation, to philanthropy-powered grassroots activism for paid leave policy change in the United States, philanthropy can, and should, push decision-makers on economic justice issues. Philanthropy can also back media and content which contribute to the narrative shift to elevate the care economy and create new economic opportunities for women.

Najmi validated the need for a marked increase in philanthropy funding for women as a Women and Girls index report shows that only 1.9 per cent of the money going to support charities in the US are supporting gender equality outcomes. She highlights also that there is often a gap between where funding is made and the initiatives that can have the biggest impact and evidence can help to close this gap, improving outcomes for everyone involved. The GEF Action Coalition’s intentional diversity and effort to include the voices of women across age and socio-economic status was a powerful example of how inclusive decision making can drive more effective change.

READ MORE

Only

0.8%

of the money going to support charities in the US are supporting gender equality outcomes

CONVERSATION 4

66%

of women identified an increase in caring duties such as childcare or looking after an elderly relative

Transforming Economic Justice to advance Gender Equality

IN NUMBERS

0%

of all global employment is made up by women but women account for 54 per cent of overall pandemic job losses.

0%

of women identified an increase in caring duties during the pandemic.

0x

Women spend up to 10 times more time on unpaid labor than men.

WHAT'S NEXT FOR PHILANTHROPY?

These rich and substantive discussions in this series have helped to situate philanthropy’s role in advancing the actions set out at the Generation Equality Forum. While each area requires expertise and knowledge to create effective solutions to their issues, what binds them together are the bold and new ways in which philanthropists can begin to fund gender-equal initiatives to see sustainable and transformative change.

COLLABORATION

is key to strengthening actions and creating coalitions that solve every piece of the puzzle. It requires clear communication and understanding the values that drive each person’s involvement in the gender space.

INCLUSION

of those communities and voices most proximate and impacted by inequity, climate change, and economic uncertainty. Only when those voices are included and acted upon, will we see sustainable solutions start to take hold.

TRUST

is vital to building partnerships that advance equity, shift power, and support mutual accountability. Re-envisioning long-standing approaches to philanthropy means rethinking traditional models of giving and creating partnerships built on respect and humility.

LEADING THE WAY

to invest differently, whether it’s seeking out new organizations to support or changing the way funding is given. The power of women who have a seat at the table to include and elevate the voices of the unheard can have seismic shifts on policy and funding agendas.

EVERYONE HAS A ROLE TO PLAY

in adequately funding, resourcing, and advocating for gender equality. Governments, civil society, business, and philanthropy all have unique roles to play and a responsibility to do more. Together we have the creativity, connections, and resources to champion the cause and lead the change.

COLLABORATION

is key to strengthening actions and creating coalitions that solve every piece of the puzzle. It requires clear communication and understanding the values that drive each person’s involvement in the gender space.

INCLUSION

of those communities and voices most proximate and impacted by inequity, climate change, and economic uncertainty. Only when those voices are included and acted upon, will we see sustainable solutions start to take hold.

TRUST

is vital to building partnerships that advance equity, shift power, and support mutual accountability. Re-envisioning long-standing approaches to philanthropy means rethinking traditional models of giving and creating partnerships built on respect and humility.

LEADING THE WAY

to invest differently, whether it’s seeking out new organizations to support or changing the way funding is given. The power of women who have a seat at the table to include and elevate the voices of the unheard can have seismic shifts on policy and funding agendas.

EVERYONE HAS A ROLE TO PLAY

in adequately funding, resourcing, and advocating for gender equality. Governments, civil society, business, and philanthropy all have unique roles to play and a responsibility to do more. Together we have the creativity, connections, and resources to champion the cause and lead the change.

CONCLUSION

WITH THANKS

Women Moving Millions would like to thank the United Nations Foundation for their support on the webinar series, as well as all the speakers who gave their time and our members who were engaged in the series.

We’d also like to thank Digitronix and Global Office Consulting for their support in creating this report.

A GENDER-EQUAL FUTURE IS POSSIBLE. WE CAN ALL

#GETEQUAL #GETEQUAL #GETEQUAL

#GETEQUAL #GETEQUAL #GETEQUAL

#GETEQUAL #GETEQUAL #GETEQUAL

#GETEQUAL #GETEQUAL #GETEQUAL

#GETEQUAL #GETEQUAL #GETEQUAL

#GETEQUAL #GETEQUAL #GETEQUAL

Realizing Generation Equality

In partnership with the UN Foundation through a four-part conversation series, WMM invited renowned philanthropy and private sector leaders, advocates, and experts in their respective fields to explore key questions that intersect with the issues of gender equality and philanthropy. Our report explores key themes and topics from each of those four conversations.

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