Women Empowerment: Loans for women in Galgaduud
As part of women empowerment program, HIRDA has implemented in 2015 a pilot project that provides small loans to women entrepreneurs in Galgaduud region of Somalia, especially in Abduwak. HIRDA’s gender programs are aimed to improve the lives of women and girls in Somalia. Among HIRDA’s gender objectives are; enabling women to organise themselves and increasing their financial dependency. This particular program was in the context of increasing the independence of women.
The main goal of the project is enhancing women’s entrepreneurial capacity to be economically independent and earn their livelihood. The requirement for eligibility is to own small business and be reliable. After 6 months, participants will return the loan and it will be given to a new people.
With this project, HIRDA has worked with women organisation called KARAAMA who supported the selection of the beneficiaries. The project, coordinator, Mrs. Fadumo Anod said; “We were able to support, with this project, 20 women entrepreneurs who are single mothers or widows’’. Ms. Anod, added, “during the 6-month period there is a monitoring process where we look into the businesses and examine the progress”.
Moreover, the women receive entrepreneurship training which includes; financial management and sales. The given loans so far were given to women with businesses in different sectors such as; food, clothing (tailors etc).
After each group return the loan and finish their training, they advise the new applicants and give recommendations. The project manager thinks that these testimonials will help future applicants to plan better and do better. Next month, there will be conclusion ceremony for a group of women who completed the training and ready to return the loans.
During the implementation of this project, we have experienced the importance of supporting women entrepreneurs and HIRDA is planning to upscale this project.