Assessing the Effectiveness of Microfinance in the Empowerment of Women Entrepreneurs: A Case Study of Tamale Metropolis.
Financial services and micro credit are targeted at the poor to improve their livelihoods. Several projects have come and gone yet the poverty situation does not seem to improve. CASUD MED and Bonzali Rural Bank credit schemes came with the main objective of improving the businesses of their clients especially women through the provision of small loans. The study was therefore conducted to determine the effects of the credit schemes on empowering women entrepreneurs in the Tamale Metropolis. To achieve this, purposive and simple random sampling methods were used to select 200 respondents from twenty beneficiary groups, ten (10) each from each scheme. Primary and secondary data were collected for the study. Rice processing, Shea butter extraction, crop farming, and trading were the main businesses identified. The credit was timely and easily accessible. All 200 respondents agreed that the credit has impacted significantly on consumption, expansion of businesses, income, as well as savings. 98.5% of the credit beneficiaries describe the schemes as effective and efficient in the conduct of their business. 66.5% of the respondents prefer welfare type of credit schemes as oppose to 33.5% of the respondents that prefer institutional type of credit scheme. The credit schemes are generally good and effective, and should be sustained and expanded so that others could also benefit.