Gender and Poverty Reduction in Ghana: The Role of Microfinance Institutions

  •  Bibiana K. Batinge    
  •  Hatice Jenkins    


Inequality between men and women is widely acknowledged across many parts of the globe. For example, among paid employees in Ghana, women’s average hourly earnings were around 67% of men. The disparity in earnings perpetuates poverty. Access to financial resources is widely regarded as crucial machinery to addressing this gender disparity and reducing poverty among women. Microfinance is a conduit to increasing access to finance among poor urban and rural women who usually lack the collateral to access loans from traditional financial institutions. Notwithstanding the vital role microfinance institutions play, there is no consensus on the assertion that its impact is generally favourable. Therefore, this study investigated the role of microfinance on health, education, and standard of living, as dimensions of poverty reduction in the Techiman Municipality of Ghana. The results indicate that access to microfinance services positively correlates to health, education, living standards and poverty reduction. Therefore, it is essential to extend the reach of microfinance services to increase access further to finance and, consequently, accelerate the rate of poverty reduction within the Municipality.

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