Women in Kabwe, Zambia’s central province are establishing clubs and associations to help fight poverty. Through these organizations, Zambian women are educated on aid programs available and encouraged to take advantage of them.
Kabwe is a rural province with an 80 percent poverty rate. Women are especially vulnerable to poverty because of the tradition of gender inequality.
In the Mumbwa district of Kabwe, the Tandabale Wakamana Club has 20 female members who work to improve the quality of life and agriculture. Together they grow maize, groundnuts, and keep livestock.
Rhoda Kakoma, a member of the Tandabale Wakamana Club, said: “Through our club, I now own goats. I keep chickens and I also make fritters and the money I raise I am able to send my children to school. I have now managed to build a house which I have roofed.”
According to Mumbwa community development officer Abel Mwape, women are empowering one another in areas such agriculture, weaving, tailoring, and rearing animals. These clubs help women find markets so they can sell their produce to make for profits.
In the Itezhi tezhi clubs have encouraged women to get involved in peanut butter making, basket weaving, and netting to sell in the markets.
The clubs are also making women aware of the Food Security Pack (FSF) which is a safety net program for farming households; particularity aiding household headed by women, children, and disabled persons.
Women are also connected to the Social Cash Transfer which provides women involved in agriculture with cash incentives in order to maintain their farms and livelihoods.
“Empowering rural women, therefore, remains cardinal to the well-being of individuals, families and rural communities,” said Engwase Mwale, the executive director for Non-Governmental Organizations Coordinating Council (NGOCC). “This is largely because women are the bedrock of our families, and indeed society at large.”
– Marie Helene Ngom