Working together to tackle gendered poverty

Buttle UK, the Smallwood Trust and Turn2us are joining forces to tackle the root causes of gendered and child poverty by creating a collaborative programme which aims to test the effectiveness of a co-produced approach to grantmaking for women and their children.

This article is 28 months old


As funders with a combined track record of almost 300 years in providing grants to individuals experiencing financial insecurity and hardship, we recognise the continuation of deep and systemic poverty. Together, we want to look further than the immediate alleviation of poverty to include long-term systems change that will help end financial insecurity for women and their children.

Studies clearly show that women are more likely to live in poverty than men and that households with only female adults are much more likely to be poor. Additionally, single parents and single female pensioners are particularly at risk of poverty, while children are increasingly more likely to live in poverty than the rest of the population.

This gendered poverty is caused by the intersections of women’s position in the labour market, the gendered roles within the family and in society, and the design of the social security and tax system. We know that the intersections of other inequalities exacerbate gendered poverty and that women from racially minoritized groups, disabled women, women with caring responsibilities and trans and non-binary people are more likely to face financial insecurity and discrimination which impacts their social and economic outcomes.

There is also strong and consistent evidence that shows that children and young people who grow up and live in poverty are more likely to have poorer educational and social outcomes when compared to their peers. For example, single parent households – some of the most financially insecure households in the country – are mostly headed by women. Therefore, we also want to test whether tackling gendered poverty can have a life changing impact on children and young people.

Our goal is to build a strong partnership between local communities and funders, who will take an intersectional gendered lens approach, to support longer-term transformational change. We believe that working alongside local communities will help create a movement of change against the systemic poverty suffered by women and children.

Over the course of 2021, we have deepening our partnership and exploring potential avenues of action. We have recruited a Project Manager who will run our inception phase through 2022 and we will announce shortly which area of the country we will explore working in.

If you would like to find out more or be involved in our learning journey please email:

Find out more about the Smallwood Trust

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