Paper

Tap and Reposition Youth (TRY): Providing Social Support, Savings and Microcredit Opportunities for Young Women in Areas with High HIV Prevalence

Providing credit, savings and social support services to vulnerable women in the slums of Nairobi
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This paper discusses Tap and Reposition Youth (TRY), an initiative of the Population Council and K-Rep Development Agency (KDA), the oldest and the largest microfinance institution in Kenya. The project (1998-2001) was four-phased and aimed at reducing adolescents' vulnerabilities to adverse social and reproductive health outcomes, including HIV infection.

The paper describes the four phases in detail:

  • Focusing on group formation and credit;
  • Strengthening the social intermediation components within TRY;
  • Forming young savers clubs and providing safe spaces;
  • Programming for differing conditions and evolving capacities.

TRY targeted out-of-school adolescent girls and young women, aged 16 - 22, in the low income and slum areas of Nairobi, Kenya.

  • In the first phase:
    • Groups of 25 were formed; these were further sub-divided into groups of five each;
    • After providing training support and promoting savings, initial loans of $40 to $200 were provided to two members of the sub-group.
  • The subsequent phases:
    • Concentrated on providing accessible savings with safe and supportive peer - group experiences;
    • Focused on providing social support, mentoring and safe savings services, upon realizing the diverse nature and needs of the groups.

The paper concludes with the following recommendations:

  • Promotion of savings for the adolescent slum girls;
  • Provision of social support and mentoring;
  • Encouraging of group mobilization and support using individualized credit plans;
  • Use of different microfinance models for different sets of girls.

About this Publication

By Erulkar, A., Bruce, J., Dondo, A., Sebstad, J., Matheka, J., Khan, A. & Gathuku, A.
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