—Central Province Permanent Secretary (PS), Edwidge Mutale, has reiterated Government’s commitment towards availing women clubs in Mkushi district access to Women Empowerment Fund (WEF).
Ms Mutale made the assurance when she presented a Women Empowerment Fund cheque of K49,000 to women clubs in Mkushi today.
She said Government’s consistency on the issue of empowering women with grants was exemplified by the fact that K110,000 was disbursed to women clubs in November 2013 under the same program.
The PS said the money was released by the Gender and Development Ministry for the program that was being administered in the District by the Community Development, Mother and Child Health (MCDMCH).
Ms Mutale pointed out that apart from consistency towards women empowerment, Government had de-centralised operations of these funds in order to make it easier for women to access.
She said Government had adopted this course in view of the difficulties that women clubs faced in accessing loans from banks, adding that Government’s women empowerment funds were given as grants.
The PS revealed that within the space of two months, Government had disbursed a total of K49,000 to 13 women clubs in Mkushi district alone.
Ms Mutale emphasised the need for prudent use of the funds to the benefiting women clubs, explaining that there was need to utilise the funds for ventures that had long-term benefit such as income generation.
The PS cautioned the clubs against adopting ventures of short term benefit, saying that such a direction would be retrogressive to Government’s vision for alleviating poverty amongst women.
She also advised women clubs to maximise the technical expertise available at district administration, adding that this was important in management of enterprise.
According to district officials at the Department of Community Development, eleven women clubs received K110,000 in November 2013, whilst Chalata and Twikatane women clubs became the latest 2 recipients of K49,000 on January 17 2014.