Kajiado Women Empowerment Through Cooperatives in Financial Inclusion

KAJIADO – In Kajiado County, an innovative initiative has been gaining momentum, focusing on the empowerment of women through the establishment of women-led cooperatives. These cooperatives are providing women with safe and reliable avenues for saving money and accessing credit, amidst the backdrop of traditional barriers to financial inclusion.

According to Kenya News Agency, Pauline Kariuki, the network has successfully registered five women-led cooperatives in Kajiado. This initiative is aimed at fostering enterprise diversification and offering alternative income sources beyond the county’s traditional livestock economy. The move represents a significant step towards financial empowerment and economic self-sufficiency for women in the region.

Kariuki elaborated on the objectives of these cooperatives, noting that they enable women to take leadership roles in marketing local products such as beadwork and African leafy vegetables, thereby increasing their economic participation and influence. These products have not only gained popularity locally but also hold the potential for international market penetration, thus providing a substantial income source for the women involved.

The shift towards a cooperative model was a strategic decision to unify various economic activities, including beadwork, vegetable farming, and even fishery, under a single umbrella. This approach has enhanced the cooperatives’ collective bargaining power, improving market access and resilience against environmental and economic fluctuations.

James Ngoke, Kajiado County’s Director of Cooperatives, underscored the importance of viewing cooperatives as viable business entities and stressed the necessity of providing financial literacy training and guidance on compliance with by-laws. Furthermore, Agneta Saruni, a cooperative officer in the county, emphasized the significance of diversifying economic activities to combat the challenges posed by climate change and to promote sustainability.

The introduction and growth of these cooperatives are indicative of a broader transformation within the community, as they foster a culture of economic innovation and resilience. They also offer a platform for women to engage in leadership and decision-making processes, enhancing their societal roles and contributing to community development.

Related Articles

Back to top button