Women’s Empowerment and Microfinance: Evidence from Kondoa District

Peter Kirigiti Josephat, Arnold Kabyemela Fulment, Benta Matunga

Abstract


One way of empowering women is through the provision of loans. There are gender stereotypical beliefs about abilities of women to effectively utilize only small loans and inability to engage in a profitable non-traditional self-employment. The study was conducted in order to examine the women empowerment in Kondoa District and recommend the appropriate ways in which women empowerment could be strengthened or achieved.

The data were collected from 415 women among whom 214 were MFIs members whereas 201 were non-MFIs members. The empowerment of women engaged with MFIs was measured in five dimensions which are legal, economic, interpersonal, familial and political. The findings of the study show that women were empowered in economic, interpersonal and familial dimensions. There is no total empowerment among the surveyed women in Kondoa District.

Based on the findings, it is recommended that more education should be provided to men in order to end the discriminatory practices in the society and patriarchal system of life. The women in the rural areas should be provided with financial services by the government in order to strengthen the operations of the SACCOS while financial institutions should expand their operations to the rural areas for more women to obtain loans.

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