In my 30 years of working in global development, I still get excited when I see people’s lives transformed. Right now, in places like Sri Lanka, Ethiopia and Nepal, I see this incredible transformation happening through Self Help Groups specifically for women.

Why women? Because it’s been proven time and again that when women have the opportunity to rise up, they bring entire communities with them.

Self Help Groups are a simple, yet highly effective way to help lift women and their families out of poverty. They also provide emotional support and teach valuable life skills. They help women access a better future and have a positive impact on generations to come.


A safety net for today—a more secure future tomorrow 


These groups provide a safety net for vulnerable women where emergencies happen and unexpected expenses arise. Women can take low-interest microloans to cover the costs of things like school fees for their children and unforeseen medical bills. This helps them avoid predatory loan sharks who charge huge interest fees. 

body1.jpgWomen empowered by our Self Help groups. 


Valuable benefits of Self Help Groups:


Women who typically do not have access to traditional banking can also have a secure place to keep and grow their money through these groups. Women pool their savings with other group members, and as their money grows, they can access larger loans to start small businesses.

Many of the women involved in Self Help Groups, like Yenenesh, go on to become successful entrepreneurs! Once the poorest among the community, they can transform into job creators for the community.


“Once the poorest among the community, they can transform into job creators for the community."


Women learn valuable skills, like how to read, write, save, and borrow money responsibly. They also learn about the warning signs of human trafficking and exploitation, which threaten the safety of vulnerable women and their families. These skills have a ripple effect as their children become less at-risk of being lured into dangerous work or exploited by traffickers.

body2.jpgWomen learn valuable skills, like how to read, write, save, and borrow money responsibly.

Perhaps the biggest benefit of these groups is the relationships and connections that form, which provides the emotional support they need. After the civil war and catastrophic tsunami in Sri Lanka, people were left traumatised. These groups filled the gap to provide emotional and social support to communities healing from trauma.

These Self Help Groups allow a safe place for women to share their concerns, ask questions and seek advice. Some come together and sing, others pray, but no group is short on laughter!


A lifeline during the global pandemic


When emergencies occur, the poorest always suffer the most, and this pandemic has been no different. That’s why savings groups have been so important this last year. Through them, our partners continue to care for women and their families as they weather the storm and remain resilient in the face of one of the greatest global challenges of our time.

body3.jpgMany of the women in Self Help Groups go on to become sucessful entrepreneurs. 


I hope you are as inspired as I am by what God is doing. He is truly at work in these groups and the benefits will be felt for generations. I invite you to be a part of this amazing transformational work.

Want to learn more? Read the stories of three courageous women involved in Self Help Groups—Yenenesh, Selina, and Chimini. They have all risen above their challenges to succeed in business, find healing from trauma and impact their families and communities for the better.     

 


For just $10, a woman can join a Self Help Group for a year!
 

 

Support a woman today


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