Women, poverty and livelihoods : development strategies for the Zambia Baptist Association in Ndola, Zambia.
This dissertation seeks to address the issue of women, poverty and livelihoods in Ndola and how the Zambia Baptist Association, (the Z.B.A.) could implement development strategies in response to this problem. Through my field research, where I interviewed a number of poor women in Ndola, Church leaders at both local and national level within the Z.B.A, library research and internet search, I have come to realize that the problem of poverty among women needs addressing. I found out during my research that many poor women in Africa live in chronic poverty as a result of economic and social injustices they face in many societies. By virtue of their social status as females, many women are denied access to and control of assets that would enable them realize their development aspirations. I found out that many poor women in Ndola have come up with six key livelihood strategies for survival. These livelihood strategies being; selling food and groceries in shacks, subsistence farming, begging and sending children to beg, charcoal burning, formal employment and brewing illicit beer. Through this research, I was also made aware of the potential that the Z.B.A. has to help alleviate poverty among women in Ndola, despite some area of concern with regard to their patriarchal leadership structures at both local and national Church level and the patriarchal theology that restrict women's activities within the Church. This dissertation offers a number of development proposals based on the sustainable livelihoods framework which is a coherent and clear tool that is used to understand people's livelihoods. I propose in this dissertation that the Z.B.A. needs to respond to women's poverty in Ndola through three approaches, namely; transforming religion and culture, building poor women's asset portfolio and enhancing those strategies that could potentially become sustainable. When this is done, it would help to alleviate poverty among poor women in Ndola.
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