Income generating projects and the poverty of women : the case of Chinamora.
Rural women in Zimbabwe are disproportionately represented among the poor. Among the interventions taken to mitigate the poverty suffered by women is the concept of income-generating projects (lGPs). Government, non-governmental organisations and donor agencies support the IGPs. After years of channeling resources through the IGPs to alleviate the poverty of mostly rural women, it is necessary that we take stock of the benefits that have been realised. The aim of this thesis is to identify the benefits and pitfalls of the IGPs in alleviating poverty. A case study of two projects in Chinamora communal lands in Zimbabwe demonstrates that IGPs do provide some benefits to participants and their households. Limited funding for start-up capital and lack of viable markets are among the major impediments to increased benefits. There is evidence that women can successfully organise themselves and explore previously male dominated areas of production such as carpentry. This suggests that IGPs do have the potential to somewhat alleviate poverty. making it necessary for the supporting institutions to seriously consider improving the shortcomings presently plaguing IGPs.
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