Gender Lens Investing: A way to advance women's leadership in Latin America

By Natalia Wills, Country Representative at Pro Mujer Mexico

Without gender equality, it won’t be possible to achieve sustainable development for humanity and our planet. This is why we need to double down on efforts and innovate to develop new mechanisms that accelerate closing gaps that disproportionately affect women.

Gender lens investing is one way to accelerate this work. It encourages the use of capital to advance gender equality. One of the direct impacts of this approach is that it advances women’s leadership in the labor sector by promoting the channeling of funds toward women-led companies. It also encourages women’s participation in managerial positions, their professional growth, and the implementation of policies and practices for equality within companies, such as wage parity, equal opportunities, non-discrimination, anti-harassment, and work-life balance initiatives.

Pro Mujer’s integrated platform provides financial, health, and education services, alongside gender lens investing through the Ilu Women’s Empowerment Fund. The organization fosters women’s leadership through a deep understanding of women’s needs and its comprehensive platform that nurtures and professional development.

Since the beginning of my career, I have been dedicated to developing innovative programs and initiatives aimed at reducing disparities in Latin America. At Pro Mujer, I have had the opportunity to pursue this passion to ensure that women have opportunities to reach their full potential. When I joined Pro Mujer in 2018, I had just taken a year to dedicate myself full-time to my children. When I went back to work, I thought it would be difficult to advance my career while staying close to them. At Pro Mujer I found a company that offers flexible hours and the possibility of working from home (even before the pandemic).  This has allowed me to have work-life balance, while I continue my professional development and pursue my passion for promoting gender equality.

I am very proud to be working alongside key diverse actors as part of a global effort to strengthen gender lens investing in Latin America, which is fundamental to achieving true transformation in our region.