Turkana County: Joyce Emanikor Women Empowerment through Table Banking
What is table banking?
It is a group funding scheme where members of given groups meet once a month, place their savings, loan repayments and other contributions on the table then borrow immediately either as long term or short term loans. The women often utilize the funds borrowed as capital for their livelihoods.
The office of the Turkana County MP has partnered with Joyful Women Organization (JoyWo) to economically empower women in Turkana through the table banking initiative. The enterprise was launched in Lodwar town on 12 April 2014 by Her Excellency Rachel Ruto, the national patron of JoyWo. This was followed by recruitment and training of a Coordinator and 13 Programme Officers who immediately embarked on mobilizing and training women.
JoyWo, through its staff, has not only provided women with entrepreneurship skills but enabled women to access such basic services as NHIF and NSSF.
As at March 2015, Turkana County has 146 women groups with a membership of 2,383 women and savings of 6.2 million Kenya shillings. JoyWo has an office in Lodwar town situated at Nawoitorong, Norad Road, behind AIC Nakuluja Academy. The programme Officers supports women groups at the sub-county, ward and village levels. However, women can visit both JoyWo and the County MP’s office for guidance on starting table banking or sorting any problems encountered by the various groups.
So far women have borrowed money and met their household needs including education, health, food security and running of small businesses. Key projects that individual group members are beginning to engage in the include:
- Basketry /Mat Making Market Linkages
- Livestock production-value addition
- Marketing of Farming products like maize, sorghum and fruits