- September 4, 2019
In collaboration with the SEEP Network and FSD Africa, Nathan conducted research to understand the relationship between Savings Groups and Women’s Empowerment, culminating in the development of a learning brief “Women’s Empowerment and Savings Groups: What Do We Know?” and an accompanying Monitoring and Results Measurement Toolkit.
There is strong evidence that Savings Groups expand access to financial resources by women, and contribute to asset accumulation and increased business investments. This is why Savings Groups are commonly promoted as an economic strengthening strategy within women’s empowerment programming. There is, however, a need to better understand the pathways between Savings Groups and women’s empowerment; and to expand measurement frameworks beyond short-term, economic outcomes. This is because social empowerment has intrinsic value, and the economic gains achieved by women in Savings Groups may be limited, or unsustainable, within inequitable gender structures.
This MRM toolkit shares the pathways towards empowerment that Savings Groups facilitate and provides guidance for how to better design, monitor and evaluate Savings Groups programs through a gender transformative lens. It is practical and adaptable to all types of financial inclusion programs aiming to be gender transformative. In using this tool, the anecdotal stories we hear so often can be captured and validated to build knowledge in this sector.
Nathan experts Katherine Rickard and Lis Meyers, who worked on the learning brief and toolkit, will be presenting material on the subject at the 2019 SEEP Annual Conference.