Examining the Impacts of Microcredit Facilities on Women’s Livelihood in Gulu District: A Case Study of BRAC Uganda
Auma, Coline Ongom
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This study was to examine the impact of microcredit facilities on women’s livelihoods in Gulu District, a case study of BRAC Gulu Branch. The study used cross-sectional survey research and purposive and systematic sampling techniques were used. A sample size of 40 women and 40 BRAC officials were used and interviewed. The data collected was edited, coded and entered using IBM SPSS v20 for analysis and presentation. Majority of the women were between 30-39 years (37.5%), primary level constituted the highest level of education, 60.0% of these women who responded were married and the biggest family size was between 7-9 members. The women interviewed also were found to be mostly engaged in retail business which has lasted majorly 1-5 years. Majority of women had agreed that microcredit facilities have been easily accessible, 42.5%; improved on their saving habit, 52.5%; improved on their household income72.5%; they have been empowered , 80.0%; and finally, improved on their household decision making, 72.0%. Pearson correlation showed a strong positive correlation between access to microcredit facilities and saving habit with, (r=0.82) and P=value (0.04) < 0.05. It has been revealed 45%, 57.5%, 42.5%and 37.5% of the women face challenges of limited collateral security, untrustworthiness, fluctuating interest rate, short and repayment period respectively. The researcher recommended that there is need to introduce a flexible repayment period and fixed and fair interest rate to the clients/women, BRAC should institutionalize monitoring and evaluation system that is effective and efficient, Bridging the communication gap through using effective methods of communication like the use of SMS notification to remind their clients, and lastly, there is need to build clear sustainability aspects such that there is lasting impacts on the women’s livelihoods.