Woman to Woman

Challenges Faced by Women in Migori County, Kenya

In Migori County, like much of rural Kenya, women shoulder a significant portion of the agricultural work. They are not just the caretakers of the family, but also the main contributors to the local economy. However, the combination of low educational levels, limited access to credit facilities, and societal and cultural practices that favour men, restrict these women from reaching their full potential. These factors result in limited opportunities for economic growth and advancement. It’s a pressing issue that we at Fahari Community Initiative are addressing to empower these women and subsequently strengthen the local economy. We work with women to help other women improve their lives, hence the name “Woman to Woman”.

Programme Activities

1. Adult Literacy Classes: To offset the low educational levels, we work with local female teachers to conduct adult literacy and numeracy classes. These classes empower the women with basic reading, writing, and arithmetic skills, crucial for running any business.
2. Financial Literacy and Entrepreneurship Workshops: In tandem with adult literacy, we organize financial literacy and entrepreneurship workshops for the women. These sessions equip the women with knowledge about budgeting, saving, investment, and basic business management.
3. Microfinance Access: We engage the services of female micro-finance experts trainers teach the women how they can write proposals for funding and how to contact local banks and microfinance institutions to provide them with access to credit facilities. This enables them to start or expand their businesses. Additionally, we give assistance to the women to navigate the loan application process.
4. Agriculture Skills Training: We work with female agricultural experts to train the women on modern farming techniques, crop diversification, and value addition. This component of the programme helps the women to increase agricultural productivity and their income.
5. Cooperative Building: The programme encourages women to form cooperatives to pool resources, share knowledge, and support each other. This collective approach allows them to negotiate for better prices for their agricultural produce and reduce individual risk.

Programme Outcomes

1. Improved Literacy Levels: Through the adult literacy classes, there has been improvement in the literacy levels among women in Migori County.
2. Enhanced Economic Activities: Through financial literacy, entrepreneurial training, and microfinance access, many of the women have been empowered to start or expand their own businesses, leading to enhanced economic activities within the county.
3. Increased Agricultural Productivity: The skills training in agriculture has led to increased productivity and encouraged the women to diversify their crop production, and this has led to increased food security for the women and their families and better income from agricultural activities.
4. Empowered Women: As the Woman to Woman programme continues, we can see empowered women who are actively participating in the economic development of their households and the community at large.
5. Community Transformation: Ultimately, the improved economic status of women in Migori County is having a transformative effect on the entire community, bettering the standard of living and paving the way for further developments.

The Woman to Woman programme represents a meaningful step towards gender equality and socio-economic empowerment for women in Migori County, and by extension, in Kenya. Through this, we hope to set an example for other similar rural communities to follow.