African Journal of
Agricultural Research

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Agric. Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1991-637X
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJAR
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 6574

Full Length Research Paper

Impact of microfinance on women empowerment: An economic analysis from Eastern India

Mula G.* and Sarker S. C.
Department of Agricultural Economics, Uttar Banga Krishi Viswavidyalaya, Pundibari, Cooch Behar, West Bengal – 736165, India.
Email: [email protected], [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 31 October 2013
  •  Published: 21 November 2013

Abstract

The study was attempted to assess the empowerment of women through microfinance. It was conducted in Cooch Behar District of Eastern India. A total of 144 members from 48 groups of twelve blocks (four SHGs from each block) formed the sample size. To assess the impact paired t-test and Impact Index analysis were done. The study revealed that majority of the members was middle aged and belonged to Scheduled Caste farming family. A number of income generating activities were undertaken by the SHGs. The results showed positive change in indicators of economic empowerment like income (65.39%), employment (78.94%), investment (66.25%), savings (120.02%), assets (32.44%) and consumption (5.12%) of the members after joining the SHG. The calculated t-values for the economic indicators were significant at 1% level. It was revealed from multiple regression analysis that investment, employment generation and assets were the factors which influenced the income of the members significantly. The contribution of these variables was 83%. The gain indexes of social and economic empowerment were found to be 29.30 and 36.37 respectively. Briefly, microfinance through SHG seems to be a unique action oriented rural development strategy to tap the gesture for the upliftment in social and economic point of view.

Key words: Credit, income, employment, savings, economic empowerment, social empowerment.