Rural and Agricultural Finance ProgramRural and Agricultural Finance Program

Women & Access to Rural and Agricultural Finance

Linda Jones

Over a billion women worldwide do not have access to formal financial services, and even informal services are often unavailable, costly and inconsistent. Rural women face the greatest challenges in accessing and utilizing finance, particularly for agricultural activities. A range of factors affect women’s ability to access and uptake financial services, and to engage more productively in agricultural sectors. For  example: women have lower levels of literacy, numeracy and education than male counterparts; women are often constrained by social and economic norms and regulations in areas such as land ownership and inheritance, household and community status, financial autonomy and mobility; women often face daunting workloads on and off the farm and are responsible for ‘reproductive’ activities – caring for children, the sick and the elderly, fetching water and firewood, tending the homestead garden and livestock, cooking and cleaning – and are still often the main source of agricultural labour in the ‘productive’ realm.

Financial services offer women opportunities to expand their contributions to and benefit from agricultural development as well as to improve their economic empowerment and well-being more generally. This course examines women’s challenges and potential solutions for greater inclusion in financial markets.

Intended Audience: The course will be of interest to donors, policy makers, implementing agencies, and the private sector including financial institutions.

 
To See Course Syllabus, click here

Boulder Institute of Microfinance

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Syracuse, New York 13202, USA
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info@bouldermicrofinance.org

Boulder Institute