Kenya microfinance initiative to help rural communities

Apr 13, 2010

A new microfinance initiative has been launched with the aim of improving access to finance for around 100,000 Kenyan residents.

The scheme, which is part of the global Banking on Change project, is run by Barclays Bank and international development organisations Care International and Plan, according to the Kenya Broadcasting Corporation. In the country, the main goal will be giving members of rural communities in the Eastern and Nyanza provinces the ability to save funds and jointly access finance through the group saving and loan (GS&L) model.

"Over the course of three years, the project here in Kenya will seek to create over 4,000 GS&L groups in the seven districts," explained Adan Mohamed, Barclays Regional Managing Director for East and West Africa. He added the move will improve financial literacy in the country, as well as boost household incomes and raise the quality of life for residents.

According to the African Development Bank, the economic outlook for Kenya is positive, with a long-term development strategy, announced by the government in June 2008, currently underway.