Can the vicious cycle of gender inequality, poverty and malnutrition be broken through the microfinancing of women SHGs? Explain with examples. (150 words) [2021]

Gender inequality often results in unequal access to resources such as health, education, nutrition, and quality jobs, which can push women into poverty and malnutrition. Microfinancing of SHGs targets women who are disproportionately affected by these issues and provides them with the financial resources and skills they need to improve their economic and social status. Some examples include,

  • The Self Employed Women’s Association (SEWA) works towards nutrition security among women through microfinancing of SHGs
  • The Kudumbshree initiative in Kerala has enhanced community engagement and improved the socio-economic status of women through microfinancing
  • The Indira Kranti Patham organization has enhanced the human resource capacity of its women members through microfinancing of SHGs
  • the Mission Shakti initiative of the government of Orissa has led to better socio-economic indicators among tribal women through microfinancing of SHGs
  • The Jay Ambe SHG in Rajasthan facilitates credit availability for its poor members through microfinancing, helping to increase their creditworthiness and provide resilience against falling into poverty.

Thus the microfinancing of women’s self-help groups (SHGs) has been shown to be an effective tool for breaking the vicious cycle of gender inequality, poverty, and malnutrition in India.

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