Development of Women and Children in Rural Areas (DWCRA)- A Microfinance Success Story in Andhra Pradesh

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Case Details:

Case Code : ECON011
Case Length : 14 Pages
Period : 1980 - 2003
Pub Date : 2003
Teaching Note : Available
Organization : Development of Women and Children in Rural Areas (DWCRA)
Industry : Microfinance
Countries : India

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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Functioning of DWCRA Contd...

In addition to implementing welfare schemes for rural women, DWCRA also aimed at involving the women in development activities by organizing them into groups. Besides, it focused on social issues such as health, education, sanitation, nutrition and safe drinking water in rural areas (Refer Table I for objectives of DWCRA).

The administrative set-up of DWCRA involved five levels - village, block, district, state and national (Refer Figure I). At the village level, self help groups (SHGs) popularly known as DWCRA groups were formed. Generally, each DWCRA group had 15-20 women members. Every group chose a leader, called the organizer, who conducted group meetings and maintained the group's accounts.

Initially, the focus of the groups was on saving money. Most of the groups started with the motto - 'save a rupee per day.' Every month, the savings were deposited at the post office or in the banks.

The groups also extended credit to needy members from their savings. While in general, DWCRA groups met once a month, some groups got together more often.

At these monthly meetings, groups decided on the targets regarding the amount to be saved, the rules and regulations regarding loans, and the interest rate charged on the loans. A group which successfully achieved its savings target became eligible for availing of credit from the bank for starting income generation activity. Based on their skills, the group members collectively decided on the income generation activity that they would undertake. At the monthly meetings, these women also discussed their problems and tried to find solutions. The state government deployed a gram sevika (village coordinator) for every village to oversee the implementation of the DWCRA program.

The DWCRA program was funded by both the central and the state governments in the ratio of 75:25 respectively. In addition, every DWCRA group could avail of a revolving fund4 of Rs 15,000 to meet its capital expenditure such as purchase of machinery.

The total amount of the revolving fund was shared equally by both the central and state governments. In 1994-1995, the amount was increased to Rs. 25,000...

Excerpts >>

4] A fund set up for a specific purpose and constantly added to by income from its investments.


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