Patron -  Joanna Lumley, OBE

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Economic Empowerment of Women

undefinedThis project aims to empower women in pastoralist communities who are disadvantaged and living under difficult socio-economic conditions in arid and semi-arid areas. It is equipping women with business and production skills, and by promoting their access to rural finance providers (where these exist) as well as their access to markets, will help the beneficiaries to undertake new economic activities or expand existing ones and thereby increase their incomes. It is taking place in Uganda and Somaliland in addition to Sudan. The picture shows a women's group meeting which was organised by one of PENHA Sudan officers at Gulsa settlement in Kassala state.

Objectives
  1. To equip women with the skills and knowledge needed to undertake new enterprises
  2. To increase women's access to finance and markets
  3. To advocate for positive micro-finance policies vis-a-vis women in pastoral areas as well as equitable access to credit

Activities

This project started December 2008, so the project is still in the initial stages. Following activities have been completed so far.

  1. Identifying project implementation sites and women groups which were selected from three villages in Kassala State
  2. Conducting action-oriented research: Mapping and obtaining data and information
  3. Completing a needs assessment (April 2009)
  4. The latter two activities have been published as a baseline study.

    Read the study.

Achievements

Beneficiaries are so far, 40 women from 3 pastoral communities but there will be indirect beneficiaries of over 2,000 women. We aim at a maximum impact on womens groups living in Eastern Sudan through this project. Therefore beneficiaries will be expanded as widely as possible.

  1. Identifying project implementation sites women groups were selected from three villages
  2. Conducting action-oriented research: Mapping and obtaining data and information
  3. Completing a need assessment (April 2009)

At the end of February 2012, PENHA in partnership with PEAKS held a Policy Advocacy workshop with four of the local Women’s Leagues as part of the PENHA funded regional Women’s Economic Empowerment Programme (WEEP). The groups were from Kassala City, Kassala Rural, Griba and Halfa.

The main purpose of the workshop and exhibition was both to develop the women’s handicraft skills using local material, and to demonstrate what they had done. The material used included palm leaves and techniques such as sewing, suk suk and other methods. A report on this workshop can be downloaded as a pdf here (255kb).