Economic empowerment of women entails increasing their access to and control over productive resources, services,technologies and opportunities, access to decent work, meaningful participation in decision making at all levels such as in economic policies formulation and implementation and building their capacity to enhance their effectiveness.

Empower HER Initiave recognizes that women’s economic empowerment boosts productivity and is key to realizing the sustainable development goals, particularly Gender equality SDG 5, decent work for all SDG 8,ending Poverty SDG 1, reducing inequalities SDG 10 and ensuring better heath for all,SDG 3.

It is in this end that about a month ago,we conducted a

Baseline survey and economic needs assesment among over 350 women entrepreneurs from 6 subcounties in Kakamega county.The data collected from the research  highlighted the Impact of COVID 19 on businesses, existing gaps ,most pressing challenges and opportunities for entrepreneurial development.


As we await the official dissemination of the results, a quick look on the questionnaires show that;

1. The measures imposed during the onset of the virus in Kenya such as travel restrictions andcurfew hours have had a huge impact on the income of women entrepreneurs who majorly relied on bus companies to transport their small scale products to Kenya’s capital Nairobi for sale.

2. The ban on public gathering dealt a huge blow to women who relied on market days to make

a huge sale. Kakamega has 2 market days which are Wednesday and Saturday. During the

closure period a lot of income was lost.

3. Closure of schools have also resulted in lost wages for some private school owners and

workers, especially in the informal economy where there is no paid leave.

4. Individuals reduced trips to support economic recovery in the region, business competitions

and soft skills trainings could help women-owned firms bounce back. To the market, travel,

going out, and other social activities,the pandemic has had a negative impact on the profit levels of women

in the tourism and entertainment sector.


We are finalizing on designing our capacity building program and stakeholder engagement forum that seeks to

help inform policies and stir conversations to reduce gender inequalities and increase rural women

access to economic resources, financial assets and services as well as technologies, networks and

economic opportunities in a way that promotes their influence in policy making for effective economic empowerment.

      Growing evidence shows that when more women work, economies grow.

Compiled by Nancy,

                  Programs, Innovation and Learning

                  Empower HER