Women in the Jewish community give to fewer charities than men and tend to give less, according to research released by World Jewish Relief.
Results from the survey of 750 British Jews commissioned by the charity show just over one in 10 women have given £1,000 or more, compared with almost one in five men.
The study by Survation found that Jewish women are more likely to give smaller amounts of less than £50, with 11 percent having hit four figures. They also have a narrower focus, with more than half giving to four or fewer causes.
The numbers alone may not tell the full story, said WJR’s chief executive, Paul Anticoni, because “some donations given to us on behalf of a family are made by the man”.
He said: “In our experience, our supporters are fairly balanced between men and women, with men making up a slight majority of our donors… We have found that women in our community are as generous with their time, advice and donations and we value them highly both as board members, staff, supporters and volunteers.”
The results showed that Jewish women were nine percent more likely than men to be motivated by religious responsibility in their decision to give, and one in three are likely to give to charities supporting vulnerable women, compared with one in five men.
Women are also more likely to choose not to specify how much they have donated in the past, and while four in five women give to Israel-related causes, fewer than two-thirds of men do the same. Men are more than twice as likely not to have donated at all.
The gender differences uncovered by WJR would appear to be at odds with earlier research into charitable giving in the UK Jewish community.
An extensive 2016 report from the Institute of Jewish Policy Research (JPR) found that age was the most important predictor of charitable generosity (giving according to one’s means) with older people more generous than younger people.
Income and Jewish identity (observance, socialisation and cultural practice) were also important, according to the JPR authors, but gender “had a far smaller impact”.
WJR said its new initiative – Women of World Jewish Relief – is aimed at “encouraging women of all ages to proactively engage in the charity’s work, give according to their means and encourage their friends and family to do the same”.
Launched this month, it seeks to demonstrate “the vulnerability of many of the women supported by WJR” and show how British Jewish women can “reach across borders to connect with women in all parts of the world”.