What did we accomplish?
- Increased incomes: Women who started micro-businesses were earning from $78-$143 per month with those businesses. That’s up to 3.5 times above the international poverty line.
- More women in leadership: 125 women were able to take on new leadership positions in their community: on school boards, in water and hygiene committees, and in village development committees. These are all leadership positions outside of project committees.
- Women are more involved in decisions: 90% of women in the programme said that they were able to get more involved and make more effective decisions in their families.
- Government supported resources: The local governments provided $3,600 to support women’s groups at the local level with either credit or training.
- Women built better businesses: 575 women started micro-businesses, and 85% of women in the programme said their entrepreneurship improved to good or excellent.
- More equal labor: Men started doing housework to give their wives spaces to run their businesses and be community leaders.
- Improved women’s social positions: Women felt that they were more mobile, had more respect in their communities, and were better able to lead. They achieved this partly because they helped men start businesses which gained their respect. 100 women also got official identity cards for the first time in their lives.
How did we get there?
- Help women acquire skills: The project trained more than 4,000 women in entrepreneurship and 575 of them started micro-businesses.
- Support access to credit: The women in VSLAs mobilized $6,200 of their own money to add to the $36,000 in rotating credit funds that the project provided to women to start businesses. At the end of the project, all of the loans had been repaid.
- Provide ongoing support: The project worked with the government and local NGOs to provide mobile service clinics so that women could access ongoing help to answer business questions and continue their professional development.
- Make connections: The project linked women both to local governments and to market actors through 7 women’s agricultural cooperatives that did collective marketing to improve their businesses.
Between 2014 and 2017 the H&M conscious foundation funded the Atmanirbhar project for $167,445. CARE worked with Siddhartha Samudaik Samaj as a local partner and together we reached 4,209 people.
Want to learn more?
Check out the final evaluation.
Note: The photo used to illustrate this blog is not directly from the project described.