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Contribution of microfinance on women empowerment case study of Vision Finance company ltd Nyaruguru

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par Albert RUTAYISIRE
Protestant institute of arts and social sciences - Bachelor's degree in Business studies with education 2016
  

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Biologically, A woman is a female human being. According to Dr Mamta Ch (2016)The term woman is usually reserved for an adult, with the term girl being the usual term for a female child or adolescent. The term woman is also sometimes used to identify a female human, regardless of age, as in phrases such as " women's rights". "Woman" may also refer to a person's gender identity. Women with typical genetic development are usually capable of giving birth from puberty until menopause. In the context of gender identity, transgender people who are biologically determined to be male and identify as women cannot give birth. Some intersex people who identify as women cannot give birth because of either sterility or inheriting one or more Y chromosomes. In extremely rare cases, people who have Sawyer syndrome can give birth with medical assistance. Throughout history women have assumed or been assigned various social roles.

2.2. VFC Ltd and Various Credit Lending Models

According to hope magazine(2016) Vision Finance company Ltd (VFC Ltd) is the Christian microfinance subsidiary of World Vision and is one of the largest microfinance institutions serving rural underprivileged communities in Rwanda, many of which do not have access to formal financial services. VFC started in 1997 as a microfinance department under World Vision Rwanda and has since grown to become one of the largest regulated microfinance institutions in Rwanda today.
 VFC serves people and communities that are economically productive but low-income, especially women in very rural areas. This includes small business owners and salary earners who are looking for opportunities to provide better lives for their families and a promising future for their children.
 The average client of VFC is a woman, often widowed, looking after a family of 5-7, some of whom are orphans. She owns a small business, usually a market stall in a market or a roadside kiosk. She believes she can grow her business to support her family, sending her children to school and to provide for their health and welfare.
 

A unique lending approach:
according to VFC lending methodology manual 2014, VFC serves communities with 3 main types of loans: community banks, solidarity groups and individual loans.

a) Community banks create an opportunity for the poorest entrepreneurs to obtain credit. These are self-selected groups of 10 - 30 borrowers who agree to cross-guarantee each other's loans. The group screens potential borrowers and tracks each repayment, building their leadership and sense of pride along the way.

b) Solidarity groups are designed for more experienced entrepreneurs with slightly larger enterprises. They have fewer members than community banks, with an average of 5 members who guarantee each other's loans. Members who make repayments on time become eligible for larger individual loans.

c) Individual loans go to borrowers who have either grown their businesses successfully through a solidarity group or who have medium-sized businesses that qualify for these larger loans.  The individual loans typically require either 2 guarantors or collateral. Borrowers often create a multi-year business plan in consultation with their loan officers

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