In Sight - Why Grantmakers in India Need a Gender Lens

Strategic Philanthropy | Mar, 2016

Men and women are disproportionately affected by social issues such as poverty, health, domestic violence or education. Understanding how a particular gender experiences a situation helps design, identify or fund programs that meet the needs of a target population better. Dasra’s whitepaper In Sight helps grant makers understand how adopting a gendered approach will create deeper impact and improved returns to their investments.

In Sight explains how to apply a gender lens while setting grant making priorities, first by identifying women and girls as a high-priority beneficiary group, and using an intersection of lenses - gender, caste, religion - when setting priorities. Next, to institutionalize a gender lens in internal policy directives and impact assessment, provide learning opportunities for staff to understand gender equality better, and drive the gender lens agenda through the founder and leaders of the organization. Finally the report discusses how to promote gender diversity and equality across all sections of staff for better decision making, and in turn build the capacity of each grantee to drive gender through their priorities, processes and people.

The report puts the onus on both the givers (funders) and doers (non-profits) to drive conversation and action on the critical role that gender plays in the socio-economic development of India, and demystifies the concept of using a gender lens.

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