Table banking is helping Kenyan women put food on the table – a global problem

Food table banking is turning the table on women’s systematic and systematic financial exclusion. Credit: Joyce Chimbi / IPS
  • Joyce Chimbir (Nairobi)
  • Inter Press Service

In all, he would pocket about গ্রামের 2,500 in the village, a significant amount. Not only will it be enough to feed his family of five, but it will also pay for their school fees and other basic needs. In addition to maize cultivation, Chemutai sells milk to city residents.

The young5-year-old farmer, who became a widow with five young children eight years ago, said her life as a farmer was made possible and survived through table banking.

“My husband was in charge of our farm and ran all the business related to the farm. I knew how to cultivate because I grew up cultivating land, but I didn’t have the money to buy seeds and fertilizer or knowledge of farming, ”he says.

Fortunately, a year before her husband’s death, Chemutai joined a table banking group under the Joyful Women’s Organization (JOYWO), a registered NGO focused on women’s economic empowerment.

As the name implies, women put their savings on a table and instantly lend each other’s accumulated funds. “Women knew about the village conservation group where contributions were spent on household items like cups, plates and even beds. We are now learning about saving and orrowing, ”he says.

Sharon Ellis Anyango said the simple concept of table banking, where a group of 10 to 35 members saves using a group-based strategy, has systematically and systematically turned tables to raise funds by placing their savings on a table and taking immediate orrowing. Financial exclusion of women.

“Table banking is about addressing the primary challenges that women face when transacting with banks and other financial institutions. Where they needed collateral which they did not have access to bank access, today they successfully raise funds among themselves.

JOYWO, whose current patron is Rachel Ruto, wife of Deputy President William Ruto, claims that approximately 200,000 members of 1,200 table banking groups in all regions of the country have a revolving fund of at least 27 million.

“Other estimates show that the table banking movement is so popular that collectively, table banking groups across the country run around $ 550,000 to $ 730,000,” says Anyango.

He explained that in the beginning only women were involved, but men became interested as they began to raise funds.

“Men have seen magic,” he says.

Now the table banking fraternity allows men to join, but the group’s constitution guarantees that at least 100 percent of the members and all leadership positions are women.

Chemutai says their 20-member table banking group currently has a revolving fund of 30 30,000. Last year, he took out loans worth হাজার 2,000 for various agricultural and animal husbandry initiatives.

“Seeds, fertilizers, labor, tractors and veterinary services, my farm son’s salary and a lot of money to feed my cows. I repay the orrow from the group, and this cycle is repeated every year, and all my work goes smoothly, ”he told IPS.

“Table banking has connected me to a reliable market. We started interacting with other table banking groups from other parts of the country, and that’s how I was able to find a market. I sell all my corn to other women in the table banking group in Nairobi and Qiambu County. I would never have met these women without table banking, ”she says.

Kemutai’s story is consistent with research by the Barilla Center for Food and Nutrition, which states that “any agricultural product we buy indicates a high probability that it will be produced by a woman.

Research points to many more gender inequalities that prevent women, such as Chemutai, from entering finance. On paper, despite having access to five acres of land, Chemutai does not own the property because the land is ‘ancestral’ land.

According to the Barilla Center for Food and Nutrition and non-agriculture is undoubtedly true for many women in agriculture, “when women are guaranteed equal access to community resources, services and economic opportunities, productivity increases, community economic and social benefits improve, and malnutrition and poverty decrease.” Gets.

Every October 16 is celebrated, as the world community celebrates another World Food Day, “Our actions are our future.” Good productivity, good nutrition, a better environment and a better life, ”gender experts, such as Anyango, told IPS that women at this level need access to the global population.

Agriculture is still the largest source of employment for 60 percent of women in sub-Saharan Africa. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), women, like Chemutai, make up two-thirds of the world’s 100,000 million small livestock managers.

Despite their contribution to agriculture, financing is still largely affordable, readily available and not readily available to women farmers. In this East African country where the table banking movement is more centralized in the countryside, women now have a lifeline to finance agricultural activities with loans on friendly terms. Aniyango stressed that women across 150 countries must be at the center of a concerted action on World Food Day to raise global awareness about hunger and the need to ensure healthy food for all.

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© Inter Press Service (2021) – All rights reservedOriginal Source: Inter Press Service

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