Why Women+

by Verve

You’ll increasingly see us use the term Women+. We could have added the plus quietly, but we’d love you to know what the plus means to us and why the change.

‘By women, for women’ – it’s been the catchphrase that represents Verve since the day we launched Australia’s first feminist superannuation fund tailored for women in 2019.

A clear(ish) statement that in a few words describes who we are and who we’re for – something that our membership base of majority women has rallied behind.

But it’s also a phrase that has been increasingly jabbing at our sides, screaming “please fix me”. 

Use of language changes over time. Meaning changes over time. What remains stable is that words have power and when it comes to gender they need to be chosen carefully and continually reviewed. 

When we founded Verve, there was no question that we would be for all women. That to us, meant anyone who identified with the term in a way that is meaningful to them.  

We built Verve to centre women in our service, investing approach, and community-based financial learning. Nothing has changed. But beyond seeking to be inclusive to a broad church of women, being ‘for women’ has also always meant that we’re for a more overall vision of gender equality. A fairer financial system and a world that lives sustainably by caring for and nurturing people and the planet. 

To achieve our mission, we’ve always known that we must advocate against gender-based financial discrimination wherever it lies, and to whoever it impacts on the gender spectrum. 

And that we will be stronger by welcoming allies and anyone who believes in our mission regardless of gender. 

Today, our community already includes men and non-binary members who are aligned with our mission and so we want the language to reflect this.

So here’s why we’re shifting our language from being ‘for women’ to being ‘for women+’

  • We’re articulating ourselves better. Words matter and this better reflects our community and our purpose.
  • Our community already consists of men and or non-binary members and we want to recognise this.
  • We get asked to define women every day. We’re bored of that question and the loaded bullsh*t behind it. This is a clearer statement of who we are here for. 

What does this mean at Verve?

Women+ is a term that can be used in different ways. Verve uses the term to centre women in a way that is welcoming and respectful of anyone who identifies as a woman, cis or trans. It’s also our way of recognising the non-binary and gender non-conforming members within our community and welcoming allies who are committed to our mission. 

Will Verve’s financial coaching events still be just for women?

Well actually, our events have never been for women only. What is essential for us is that women+ are centred, women+  hold the microphone, women+ feel safe, women+ ask questions and women+ feel empowered by a community they feel ownership over. 

Believe in our mission? Then, yes, you are welcome here. 

This article has been produced and released by Verve Superannuation Pty Ltd (ABN 65 628 675 169, AFS Representative No. 001268903), which is a Corporate Authorised Representative of True Oak Investments Ltd (ABN 81 002 558 956, AFSL 238184).

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