Ethiopia faces several social evils such as child marriage, similar to India. In an effort to improve the condition of women and ensure their financial empowerment, the country is reportedly studying the Indian model of working.

 

Currently, a strong network of self-help groups (SHGs) has been successfully working to improve the social condition of women in the country. Tesfayenesh Lema Agregaw, director (Youth Affairs) of Ethiopia’s ministry of women, children and youth affairs, told IANS that these neighbourhood groups control almost every household. She added that the groups also work towards creating awareness on sanitation programmes and vaccination schedules.

 

Working on the grass root level, they help in formulating polices on education, health and social issues like child marriage. They also record health records and education details of all the families. “India and Ethiopia share some common problems like child marriages. We want to focus on the economic empowerment of women by studying the Indian models,” Agregaw told Business Standard.

 

[Picture Courtesy: Pathfinder]

The Indian models currently being studied by the country include Kerala’s Kudumbashree model and the Self Employed Women’s Association (SEWA). Where the Kudumbashree model aims at empowering women through SHGs encouraging their entrepreneurial skills, SEWA helps financially poor women workers across India by helping them earn a living through their own labour or through small businesses.

 

According to the report, the Ethiopian delegation has also met several Indian government officials at the state and central levels and discussed the similar problems and their possible solutions. The UN report stated that Ethiopia has made commendable progress towards reaching the 2015 millennium Development Goal (MDG). The progress includes: decline in poverty, positive gains made in terms of education and health and reduction in the prevalence of HIV and AIDS.

 

ORIGINAL SOURCE: Business Standard

http://www.business-standard.com/article/news-ians/ethiopia-studying-indian-self-help-groups-to-empower-women-114102600201_1.html