Influence Of Uwezo Funds On Enhancing Livelihoods Among Youth And Women In Ainabkoi Constituency, Uasin Gishu County, Kenya
Olima, Getrude A
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The study was carried out to find out the influence of Uwezo funds on enhancing livelihoods among youth and women in Ainabkoi Constituency, Uasin Gishu County. The Uwezo Fund in Kenya is a youth and women’s fund which has its genesis in the pledge His Excellency the President Uhuru Kenyatta made to allocate the Kshs. 6 billion that was meant for the presidential run-off to youth and women groups. It was launched in 2013 with the objectives to expand access to finance through grants and credit to promote youth and women businesses and enterprises at the constituency level, thereby enhancing economic growth towards the realization of the goals of Vision 2030, to generate gainful self-employment for Kenyan youth and women, and to model an alternative framework in funding community driven development. Uwezo Fund enable youth, women and persons with disabilities to access grants and interest-free loans, as well as mentorship opportunities to enable them take advantage of the 30% government procurement preference through its capacity building programme. It took place in Ainabkoi constituency which has 3 wards, that is Kaptagat, Olare and Kapsoya. Pilot was done in Olare ward and research done in the Kapsoya and Kaptagat wards within the constituency. The objectives were to assess how Uwezo funds accessibility enhanced youth and women livelihoods in Ainabkoi constituency; to find out the extent to which Uwezo Fund capacity building programmes enhanced youth and women livelihoods in Ainabkoi constituency, to establish how the Uwezo fund institutional framework and policies influenced youth and women livelihoods; to determine how Uwezo funds savings influenced and enhanced livelihoods among youth and women in Ainabkoi constituency. The target population for the study was 9 youth groups and 16 women groups with 15 members each, and 3 Uwezo fund officials managing the groups, that is 378 respondents registered with the Department of Social Services or the Registrar of Societies and are active. The sample size was 248, arrived at by the use of proportionate random sampling technique and Krejcie and Morgan table. It took the form of a descriptive research. Data was collected through questionnaires and interviews to the individual group members and the Uwezo fund officials. Analysis was done by statistical package for social scientists (SPSS), a computerized statistical package for data analysis which helps in fulfilling research objectives and provides answers to research questions. Presentation of information was done by the use of tables, percentages and frequency distributions. Out of 133 respondents, 110 response rate was achieved. On the first objective on financial accessibility, it was established that Uwezo fund loan is accessible but insufficient amounts were disbursed to the recipients; on capacity building programmes, trainings which include financial management, group management skills, business management skills and leadership skills have been offered to the respondents and enhanced their livelihoods; on institutional framework and policies, the group constitution, the Uwezo funding policy and the government funding policies were major frameworks used by the groups to gain Uwezo funds; on savings, it was determined that all the respondents carried out savings as a major requirement to access Uwezo fund loans. In the symmetric measures, the research used Pearson’s correlation coefficient to measure the strength of the relationship of variables.The responses from the research questions were used to make recommendations to the groups, to the Uwezo fund and the government to improve policies.
University of Nairobi
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