Stumbling Blocks to Stepping Stones: The Results of Combining Choice, Literacy and Learning for the Empowerment of Women

Degree Name

MA in Intercultural Service, Leadership, and Management

First Advisor

Karen Blanchard


Capability is the freedom of individuals to lead the types of lives they value – and have reason to value. The right to do certain activities and the functional capability to do them are very different. The study involves students from the Women’s Development Center at All Nations University, run by ANIDA in Koforidua, Ghana.

Ten longer-term participant women were interviewed using a combination of open and closed questions about their experience at the Center to determine if they felt a multi-faceted educational program in Ghana increased their capability in a way that contributes to the well-being of themselves, their families and their communities.

The Capability framework proved very effective in dealing with complex interrelated questions. The positive findings demonstrate the development of various capabilities. Some of the significant ones show a movement from a marginalized status to one of social inclusion and involvement. There are also implications for urbanization given the urban setting and the growing crisis of woman, poverty and AIDS. The success of the educational/literacy components of the WDC program demonstrates some real success in addressing literacy, school drop outs and employment or income improvement for women.


International Public Health | Women's Studies

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