Socio-economic Determinants of the Performance of Informal Women's Co-operative Microfinance Societies in Enugu State, Nigeria

Evaluating performance of women's cooperatives
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This study analyzes the socio-economic determinants of informal women's cooperative microfinance societies in Enugu State of Nigeria. The study is guided by the hypothesis that informal women's cooperative microfinance associations have not significantly increased the volumes of savings or credit of their clients. The study examined a total of 216 clients selected randomly from 36 women's groups in the region. The study presents the following conclusions:

  • Most respondents depend on agriculture and allied activities for sustenance;
  • Women's access to formal microcredit is an indication of their participation in informal microfinance societies;
  • Informal women's cooperative MFIs have played a key role in addressing issues of poverty alleviation and gender inequality;
  • Informal women cooperatives have significantly increased credit disbursed to their members as well as members' savings;
  • Existing microenterprises have been expanded, new business established and women have become empowered to be more productive and earn more income.

These organizations have achieved significant impact through a simple organizational structure and various linkages that contribute to financial empowerment. The paper recommends that they should reduce their dependency on NGOs and develop their potential further through training.

About this Publication

By Opata, P. , Nweze, N.