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Women’s Empowerment

Women form the majority of Cameroon's population, yet they are treated as second- class citizens. Many women suffer from discrimination, low education, gender inequality, and gender-based violence. As a result, few women have jobs or property, and cannot access credit or formal financial institutions. Nonetheless, most women in Cameroon are responsible for their family's well-being, as they provide food and sell surplus harvest to ensure children's school fees and hospital bills are paid. Women are systematically oppressed and socially disadvantaged. In addition to the impacts this has on women as individuals, it also detracts from the success of the country, as it misses out on the social and economic contributions women can make when given the opportunity to participate.At SHUMAS, we address these problems by empowering women through sustainable economic programs and enhance women's knowledge for self-development through capacity-building programs. To achieve this, we work with our FIOH (Future in Our Hands) network, a network of 60 women's groups of approximately 30 members each. FIOH groups have access to micro-credit loans ranging from 100,000CFA to 450,000CFA once every 6 months, allowing their members to undertake various productive initiatives and building their financial literacy. In addition, we carry out capacity-building sessions to train representatives of each group in various subjects, such as productive livestock farming, small sales initiatives,food processing, etc. These representatives then become trainers who share the knowledge with the other group members.At the beginning of this program, SHUMAS worked with just 10 women's groups. The FIOH network has now grown to 60 groups, spread across several regions of Cameroon and composed largely of rural farmers. Currently, SHUMAS loans more than 10,000,000CFA biannually to these groups, and carries out at least 2 capacity- building sessions each year.
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Women's Empowerment