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Development of Poor Communities

Poverty is made worse by a lack of accountability between communities and elected Local Popular Councils who are often ineffective and do not reflect the interests of the local communities. Women in the villages surrounding El-Minya face many problems and obstacles which further limit development of these poor communities. 

Problems include illiteracy, poor health and hygiene awareness, a lack of economic opportunities, birth certificates and IDs, as well as different forms of violence practiced against them. With support from Oxfam Novib BLACD started the project “Development of Poor Communities” in 2004 to address these problems.

Working with Local Popular Councils

BLACD works with two Local Popular Councils serving 16 villages in Minya Governorate. Capacity building training is provided to the councils to increase their understanding of their role as elected councils and to enhance their work output. BLACD supports the local popular councils in identifying and finding solutions to local problems. Female participation in the Local Popular Councils is promoted as these do not yet contain any female members.


Members of a Local Popular Council receive training to become more efficient in dealing with community problems

Empowering women

As a means to improve the economic and social positions of women, BLACD opened literacy classes in the project areas in which more than 800 women enrolled. Literacy students are offered the opportunity to continue developing their reading skills in BLACD libraries after literacy classes ended. In order to alleviate poverty of the students, Group Guarantee Lending and Saving Loans have been offered to women in groups of 10 to start small income-generating projects.

BLACD further provides capacity-building training to two local Women’s Associations, and have started Women’s Social Movements in the target villages. Women who participate in the movements receive training on rights and are assisted in obtaining birth certificates and IDs. In an effort to combat violence against women, BLACD has established Listening and Counseling Centers in 12 communities offering support to women who face violence. BLACD continuously works to raise the awareness of the whole community on the role of women through regular monthly community meetings.  More than 6000 posters on women`s rights to education and social and political participation have been developed and disseminated.


A woman wants to know her rights


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Words of Beneficiaries

“My father used to make me feel like I was less than my brothers but now he boasts about me to other people in the village” A woman in one of the rural Women’s Movements/

Development of Poor Communities