Socio-economic benefits associated with Village Saving and Loan Associations (VSLAs) in Isingiro Town Council
MetadataShow full item record
Background Despite the various attempts made to eradicate poverty, it is still a major problem among most of the households. Poverty limits people from accessing basic needs such as clothing, education, medical care and housing. However, some people have resorted to joining VSLA groups to save and borrow loans so as to improve their standards of Living using their savings and loans. The VSLA groups have been used as a strong weapon to fight poverty especially in rural areas and some parts of the urban areas. Therefore this study provides insights into mechanisms through which socio-economic benefits associated with VSLAs improve the lives of the people. Methodology The findings of this study were purely qualitative where two VSLA groups were selected and these included Ebirungi Biruga Omututu (EBO) and Saving and Loan Group (SLG). It involved focused group discussions‟ where 8 members were from the EBO group and 7 members from the SLG group making a total of 15 altogether. 20 participants were involved in the in-depth interviews where 10 from SLG group and the remaining 10 members too were from EBO group. It also involved 4 key informants from each group which were deeply interviewed. The respondents were purposively selected basing on their availability and knowledge about the research topic. Findings The study found out that VSLA groups contribute positively to the socio-economic well-being of the participants. The study revealed out that members of the VSLA groups have been able to access better health and education services, improved their nutrition by using their savings to eat balanced diet, and also improved social support by strengthening their social networks. The findings of the study proved right that the socio-economic benefits associated with VSLAs have improved the participants‟ standards of living. Conclusion Village Saving and Loan Associations are essential in improving the social and economic areas to its members as well as improving their standards of living hence reducing poverty.