Project #51 | Microloans for Woman's Empowerment in Ghana

Our partnership with Groundswell International

Although Ghana is considered one of the more stable nations within West Africa, poverty has deepened in the Sahel region of Ghana, as changing rainfall patterns have reduced the water available for farming and inappropriate farming techniques have degraded the land and dramatically reduced soil fertility. This is particularly true in the Lawra District in northwest Ghana, where Groundswell works: 25% of the children are underweight, 35% are stunted, and 75% of the population is illiterate. During the dry season, it is normal for families to have only one meal a day in this district.

Our partnership with Groundswell International provided 19 women’s groups with funds to issue small loans to women participants. It is a savings-led approach to community finance similar to the Saving for Change model pioneered by Oxfam. The participating women are in control of the capital from start to finish, and the loans they receive are used to meet priority needs and to invest in income generating activities. The funds from this matching grant will also provide training and support for the women to better engage in activities to improve economic and food security.




Meet Anita & the Women of her Susu Group

Anita says a lot has changed with the women who are part of the savings for change (“susu”) groups. They are able to feed their families, pay school fees, cloth themselves, and are very bold and confident. This she said was because, aside from meeting to contribute the money, they also use the meetings as an opportunity to discuss their challenges in life for which others have solutions to or advice. This has also brought peace and harmony in homes, especially in their relationships with their husbands. She said, “we would have had all these beautiful ideas but no bank or financial institution would have come to our aid. Even if they do, we won’t be able to pay the interest these commercial banks charges.” She said, so far, no member of any of the groups has defaulted in paying their loans. “We are happy that we now have some support from the ODW project with which we can increase the size of our capital base”, says Anita.

Thank you for making this possible!

Our movement is grassroots, to us that not only means the work on the ground is led by local leaders with the support of the community, but it also means that we raise the funds for our projects through everyday donors just like you. In addition to all the donors that gave $25, $100, or $250 and the campaigners that ran a race or donated their birthday to raise funds, we also want to thank our generous business, school, and faith sponsors who believed in our work and joined the movement. Special thanks to [insert name if available].

If you want to support future projects like this you can make a donation to our jobs and skills fund.

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