Fifty eight women groups in Migori County have received Kshs. 11 million from the Women Enterprise Fund (WEF) in the last two months.
The groups constitute of 634 beneficiaries, an average of ten members per group, who hail from Awendo, Kuria East, Kuria West, Nyatike, Rongo, Suna East, Suna West and Uriri Sub counties which form Migori County.
Data from the fund shows that the women invested 56 percent of the loan in trade, while 36 percent was invested in the agriculture sector. The balance was invested in other areas such as poultry farming and maize production.
Speaking during a cheque issuance ceremony in Kuria East, Engineer Charles Mwirigi, chief executive officer, WEF said the funds are aimed at reducing the marginalization of women by empowering them to actively participate in economic development.
“Inability to access the right markets for their products and services has led many businesses with a lot of potential to fail,” said Mwirigi adding that market support is critical for the growth and general success of women-owned enterprises in Kenya. He released Kshs.1.2 million to 131 groups in Kuria East.
The support to the women groups is part of WEF’s commitment to addressing hurdles faced by 70 percent of Kenyan women and youth who remain marginalised and unable to grow and sustain enterprises, especially in the rural areas.
“The loan from WEF has helped our group expand and set up a sustainable table banking platform which has enabled me to grow my business and enrol my son in a technical training institution,” said Quinter Adek one of the beneficiaries . “It has empowered many women from Suba East Sub County economically,” she added.
According to Judith Mwangi, WEF’s officer in charge of Suna East sub county, the fund has enabled many women to establish micro and small enterprises, in the process, transforming their lives. “We train and educate them on how to access either individual or group loans, hence boosting their livelihoods,” said Ms. Mwangi
The fund offers different kinds of loans to women entrepreneurs that are registered with them, with the loan cycle ranging from Kshs. 100,000 to Kshs. 750,000. The loans support women to sustain businesses across a range of industries including: trade, agriculture and manufacturing. Since inception, at least 2, 360 groups from Migori County have received Kshs. 250.85 million from WEF, which has registered an 89 percent repayment rate. Nationally, WEF has disbursed Kshs. 16.9 billion to over 100,000 groups benefiting 1.6 million people.