Single mothers empowerment through small business development projects
The case of the GWAPA poverty alleviation programme in Gweru, Zimbabwe
Single mothers in Gweru are among the most vulnerable to poverty and disease.The GWAPA project is an attempt to rescue them from this predicament.
This study established that most of the GWAPA projects which started well were suffocating under the current (2000-2010) economic hardships.
Main challenges faced by GWAPA include the political and economic environment, HIV/AIDS, limited educational levels among GWAPA members, limited access to resources, community cultural biases and negative attitudes towards single mothers and commercial sex workers, government regulation on financial transactions and work overload among members.
The Zimbabwean government and municipalities are encouraged to invest more in the small enterprise sector as it has proven to have the capability to create employment and develop communities by mobilizing the grassroots.
The study also recommends a more detailed and deeper participatory study, related comparative studies that show differences and similarities between related projects in different areas in Zimbabwe, and similar studies on DNGOs that work with both sexes in different areas in Zimbabwe.
Musingafi is a PhD student at NWU, South Africa.
He completed Mphil from NWU, South Africa and MBA from ZOU, Zimbabwe.
He is a lecturer and volunteer development worker.
His area of interest is grassroots governance, gender, small enterprise, project management, community development, water supply and poverty reduction.