Numerous problems rural women face can be tackled if they are provided with small grants and equipped with basic business skills so that they are empowered economically.
Voluntary Services Overseas (VSO) adviser for gender project in Nsanje, Isaac Sempungu, said this in an interview with Malawi News Agency (Mana).
He noted that dependence is the main reason a lot of women suffer at the hands of men.
Sempungu believes if rural women are empowered economically, Malawi can reduce problems women face.
He said: “We give out grants to women to start small businesses and this is helping. Progress, so far, is satisfactory. Most women are benefiting from grants are able to establish their own small-scale businesses.
“This is a good thing because now they don’t have to rely on men to cater for their basic needs, hence they can make their own sound decisions regarding matters that affect their lives.”
Sempungu, however, said this alone is not enough.
VSO is implementing a three-year project in the district in which they are giving out grants to women to start small businesses.
He said under the project, they will be engaging duty-bearers to influence development and implementation of policies and systems that support women’s economic empowerment.
“We want to stimulate formulation of policies and by-laws that will create a better economic environment for women,” said Sempungu.
The Gender Project is currently being implemented in the country’s two districts of Machinga and Nsanje.—Mana