Contribution of self-help organizations in alleviating women’s poverty at house-hold level in Tanzania: a case Study of Sumbawanga Rural District, Rukwa Region

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Date
2014
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
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Publisher
University of Dar es Salaam
Abstract
This study examined the contribution of Self-help Groups or Organizations (SHGs) as a strategy for alleviating women’s poverty at house hold level in rural Tanzania. SHGs are common grass root member based institutions in which people join to take collective actions in addressing different issues pertaining poverty reduction and improving their socio-economic conditions. The study was conducted in Sumbawanga Rural District, in Rukwa Region. A sample of 125 interviewees consisting of 80 women in SHGs, 40 men non-members and 5 key informants were purposively selected and interviewed for this study. Both primary and secondary data were collected from the field using various data collection techniques including interview, observation, focus group discussion and documentary review. The data were analysed both qualitatively and quantitatively; while Statistical Packages for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 16.0 was helpful in the analysis. The findings revealed that, the groups played a great role in alleviating poverty and improving the living conditions of the families due to the improvement in the incomes of women. This helped women to increase their decision-making capacity within the household as well as in the communities. SHGs also had many in-kind benefits to its members such as gradual uplifting of self-confidence. The groups were also denoted as support groups, where dialogue, self-disclosure and encouragement among group members were promoted. They also offered an avenue where individual persons could freely express their views and be heard by the members as well as the community. Furthermore, SHGs provided a platform for members to know, socialize and get familiar to each other, a move that proved to be very important in creating networking among them. Despite the importance of SHGs to women, they still face a number of problems and challenges such as lack of training, inadequate credit facilities, poor markets and poor transport system, to list but a few. These have caused some women to achieve little or no success. However, SHGs remain favorable grass root institutions which, if institutionalized, they will be effective in mobilizing efforts and resources of poor people in the course of combating poverty.
Description
Available in print form, East Africana Collection, Dr. Wilbert Chagula Library, Class mark (THS EAF HQ1240.5.T34M98)
Keywords
Women in development, Self help groups, Women, Sumbawanga rural district, Rukwa Region, Tanzania
Citation
Mzurikwao, C.(2014) Contribution of self-help organizations in alleviating women’s poverty at house-hold level in Tanzania: a case Study of Sumbawanga Rural District, Rukwa Region.Master dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam, Dar es Salaam.