Experts around the world are sounding the alarm on the pandemic’s disproportionate impact on women’s lives. As UN Women reports, “The impacts of crises are never gender-neutral, and COVID-19 is no exception.” Economically and beyond, we are beginning to see counter effects on progress toward gender equity. Recent data from McKinsey & Co. shows that women’s jobs are almost twice as vulnerable during this crisis than men’s jobs and account for 54 percent of overall job losses (despite making up 39 percent of global employment).

Our Women & Girls Index determined—for the first time—the number of charities in the United States dedicated to women and girls and measured the amount of total charitable giving they receive. This year’s report offers the first look at how this philanthropic support has changed in recent years.

Using the most recent IRS data available, the Women & Girls Index shows that just 1.6 percent of total charitable giving in 2016 and 2017 went to organizations dedicated to women and girls.

In a world where a fraction of charitable dollars goes to women and as we continue to grapple with gender equity post-pandemic, how can donors best support organizations and leaders that are pushing for gender progress? Bold gender-focused philanthropic initiatives may have the power to move the needle—including recent announcements like MacKenzie Scott’s $4.2 billion gift.

In the big picture, Scott’s gift is unique in many ways. Its scope, scale, transparency and impact all provide lessons for donors in the long-term. As explained in her Medium piece, Scott’s team spent significant time researching the nonprofits best suited to reach her goals and trusted these organizations by providing them with unsolicited, unrestricted gifts. The organizations ranged in size and form—covering both immediate, basic needs and tackling larger, systemic inequities.

Read the full article about moving the needle on giving to women's and girls' causes by Jeannie Sager at Worth.