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MoWD launches 3 ‘Jafakash Aurat’ projects

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Women Development has launched three pilot ‘Jafakash Aurat’ projects in collaboration with Aga Khan Rural Support Programme (AKRSP), First Woman Bank Limited (FWBL) and Khushhali Bank (KB), costing Rs 170.339 million.

Sources told Business Recorder on Thursday that the ‘Jafakash Aurat’ project was aimed at socio-economic uplift of rural women. The pilot projects include Patti Development Project, Chitral (NWFP); Economic Empowerment of Rural Women, Sheikhupura/Gujranwala (Punjab) and Supporting Skill and Micro Enterprise Development, Gwadar (Balochistan).

They said that under the ‘Jafakash Aurat’ project, two institutions-Al-Noor Vocational Center for Rural Women Skill Development, Gondal, Sialkot and Aman Skill Development Center, Alipur, Islamabad-have been set up to train women in different trades.

Economic Empowerment Project of Rural Women, Sheikhupura and Gujranwala was designed to promote women entrepreneurs in livestock, grocery stores and home-made detergents with a total cost of Rs 35 million in collaboration with the First Women Bank Limited (FWBL) being the executing agency, they said.

The project was launched in 52 villages of the two districts. The direct beneficiaries of the project are about 10,000 women, while indirect beneficiaries are 33,000 households. The average loan size is Rs 5,000 to Rs 25,000 to be paid in 36 months with 14 percent mark up.

The sources said that so far Rs 4.343 million loans had been disbursed to 381 women whereas 953 women were trained. Patti Development Project, Chitral was launched for economic empowerment of women through skill enhancement, self-employment, providing micro-credit to women borrowers, the sources added.

The direct beneficiaries of the project are 9,500 women, indirect beneficiaries are 33,000 households with average loan size of Rs 5,000 to Rs 7,000 with 15 percent mark-up to be paid in 36 months, they said. They said that 129 women had been disbursed Rs 0.675 million loan besides imparting training to 5,237 women.

Source: Business Recorder