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Empowering Kenyan Women in Business and Climate Change

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Kenyan Women are directly experiencing the consequences of poverty and climate change. In Kenya Islamic Relief has trained women so they can live a fulfilling and sustainable livelihood. At least 200 women have benefited from the project. 

Wajir County is the region the project took place. Wajir County is an area drastically impacted by constant droughts and flash floods, leaving communities suffering significant loss of livelihoods and poverty.

 

Women in Wajir County have particularly suffered the effects of poverty, particularly income and food insecurity. This has been due to unfavourable gender dynamics within these vulnerable communities.

While women are expected to care for family with no compensation, men are the main decision makers. When men take the lead role managing household assets and resources it is leaving women with little to no say over issues that directly affect them and their children.

How Our Program Empowers Women

How is Training Women in Business Useful in Combatting Climate Change? 

Kenya has been experiencing a drought which has caused severe shock to the agricultural industry since the onset of the drought in 2015. The drought has affected families and limited lifestyle in Kenya. Due to agricultural damage, the most affected groups have been women and children due to the food and income insecurity. 

Existing gender roles in Kenya which perceive women in roles of motherhood limit their access to educational, health and economic resources. 

By creating opportunities and accessible resources for women to become an influence in alleviating poverty and becoming key voices in their close-knit communities, women alongside men can be participators in implementing and investing in sustainable development and poverty alleviation. 

‘Educate Women and Their Community will Prosper’

When Islamic Relief launched the community-based program for the social and economic empowerment of women, over 200 women received life-changing skills training for the betterment of their day to day lives.

These life-changing skills included:

  • Life and business skills training, resulting in many of these women becoming micro entrepreneurs, opening small businesses to generate income, as well as engaging in an otherwise male dominated agribusiness, through vegetable production and sales. This allows women to make meaningful contributions to their households.

 

  • Group savings and loans training – which has empowered women to form financial support networks by jointly saving, loaning and investing.

 

  • Linking 200 women with sharia compliant financial institutions to improve their access to financial services, where they can open bank accounts to accumulate their savings.

 

  • Engaging women in local government platforms, where they can address issues specific to women including economic empowerment of women, gender equality at work, and the eradication of child labour.

 

An IR Kenya staff evaluates the solarization of the ‘Wagalla Mother to Mother Support’ Group Shallow well at their farm

 

This project is a part of Islamic Relief’s Sustainable Solutions campaign and has greatly impacted the lives of these women in the vulnerable community of Wajir County to grow and prosper through socio-economic empowerment.

 

 

 

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