Care International, a non-governmental organisation (NGO), based in the United States, has designed a programme to provide financial support to five million women in rural communities in Ghana.
It formed part of a four-year project, known as the Micro-lead Project, which seeks to give financial assistance to 50 million women across Africa, by 2020.
The Micro-lead Project, is funded by US businessman, Bill Gates, and his wife Melinda, with support from United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) and MasterCard Foundation.
Speaking at a discussion on financial inclusion, the Project Manager, Noel da’Cruz, said currently the programme had supported about 700,000 in Brong Ahafo, Northern, Upper East and Upper West regions, women in the rural communities of Ashanti and Greater Accra regions would also be considered.
He said the NGO and its partners decided to embark on such project, to enhance the livelihood of poor women living in rural communities.
Mr. da’Cruz explained that the programme had a strong commitment to empower the women financially by linking them to financial service providers such as Fidelity Bank and credit unions, to enable them obtain credit for their businesses.
According to him, some women experienced poverty because they lacked easy access to credit to either start a business or expand one.
The Head of Programmes at Care International, Gifty Blekpe, said with a budget of about 58 million dollars, the Micro-lead Project aimed at reaching the poor in 13 countries in Africa.
She called on government and other stakeholders, particularly civil society groups, to do more in supporting women financially, to enable them take care of their families.
By Charles Amankwa