Socio-Economic Impacts of JEEViKA: A Large Scale Self Help Group Project in Bihar, India

JEEViKA is a rural poverty reduction program in Bihar, India, and this study looked at the effects it had on promoting socio-economic inclusion for rural impoverished households. The study found that JEEViKA resulted in higher levels of women’s empowerment, measured through increased mobility, decision-making and potential for collective action. Women were more politically active and their literacy levels were slightly increased. Many of the households were freed from the high cost of debt due to SHG saving schemes, and participants were more likely to use credit for productive purposes. There was higher ownership of assets, though a concerning trend of spending less on potentially more productive assets. There were fewer incidences of acute food shortages and unsanitary practices. 

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