Lisa Maniscalco

Publication Date

Spring 1998


This paper describes the experiences and views of women in the Jamestown community of Accra, Ghana, who take part in a micro credit savings and loans program through Women's World Banking (Ghana), Ltd., and Freedom From Hunger. The goal of the paper is to understand the components of this prograrn and how borrowers view these components. To give the reader an idea of the culture and environment in which the majority of the Jamestown participants live, it begins with a brief description of the life of Gifty Addy, a micro entrepreneur currently receiving a loan through this micro credit program. A history of the creation of micro credit and its philosophies and goals follows. The paper then describes "Credit with Education," the specific micro credit program Freedom From Hunger and Women's World Banking (Ghana), Ltd., implement in partnership. An explanation of the manner in which borrowers are organized is given, to highlight the ways in which "Credit with Education" attempts to bring self sufficiency to borrower groups. An overview of the weekly meetings borrowers are required to attend is presented, with the following classifications: repayment, educational sessions, and savings. These components are presented from the point of view of the funding organizations, the borrowers, and the author. Finally, the paper ties together the culture of Jamestown and its effect on the relationship between borrowers and their husbands, the role of the Community Promoter, and the women's desire to do right by their children. To conclude, the author assesses the positive and negative effects the Credit with Education program has on the women borrowers and their families.