In many developing countries, the self-employed represent more than 50 percent of the labor force. Access to small amounts of credit at reasonable interest rates can allow poor people to move from initial, perhaps tiny, income-generating activities to small micro-enterprises.
In “Micro-credit and Women’s Empowerment” Pep Bonet documented stories of women in Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Guatemala, Morocco, Peru, The Philippines and Central America who gained and were acknowledged a rightful place in their communities through micro-finance.
By entrusting local women in developing countries with manageable short-term loans, micro-finance gives them the opportunity to break the cycle of poverty and by providing independent sources of income outside the home, micro-credit tends to reduce economic dependency of women on their husbands and thus helps to enhance their autonomy. More assertive of their rights these women become a positive asset to society, and an economic engine. Against all odds these women build prosperity in an environment of inequality.
This project is realized in collaboration with Treball Solidari. Step by step, their solidarity work pays off. Despite poverty, despite discrimination, progress is possible. Micro-finance is a long-term approach to poverty alleviation as opposed to a one-time gift.