We advocate investing in women and girls because it is an effective investment and it is fair and just. There is a growing evidence base from around the world that supports increased investments in women and girls as the custodians of community and families. If we are to create the change we wish to see in the world, we must be more mindful as we make smart investment decisions. Philanthropic dollars are limited; it is investments in women and girls that bring the greatest opportunity for social change. The call to action is for a change in thinking from the philanthropic community that starts with examination and understanding that gender matters.
Inherently, we all understand that women's issues can be significantly different from men's, but often this isn't adequately considered when making decisions about a range of things. Sometimes it is appropriate and right to consider gender when developing programs to assist people.
An example of the gender difference for boys:
In response to widespread concerns that boys were seriously underachieving academically the Australian Government, in 2000 initiated a parliamentary inquiry into the education of boys. One of the most important recommendations was to reform the method of teaching reading in the early years of school.
Examples of the gender difference for women:
In 2008, the Australian Senate's Community Affairs Committee Inquiry found that the people most at risk of falling into poverty were single women. The Committee’s report advocated an overhaul of the age pension.
For many years, research on heart attacks was carried out on men. Since women have been included in the research, it has become evident that within a year of their first heart attack the death rate of women is twice that of men. The reason for this difference is not yet known. If women had been included in early research many lives could have been saved. http://www.ahrq.gov/research/womheart.htm.