An Assessment Of The Impact Of Women’s Education On Poverty Reduction In Navrongo, Ghana

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An Assessment Of The Impact Of Women’s Education On Poverty Reduction In Navrongo, Ghana

Chapter One


1.1 Background Of Study

Poverty feminization is still a global phenomenon. Women continue to be the poorest of the world’s poor, accounting for 70% of the 1.3 billion people who live in abject poverty (UNDP, 1995). Many women around the world have been denied their economic, political, social, and cultural rights due to poverty. It is the denial of a variety of essential choices and possibilities for human growth. These include the ability to live a satisfying, creative, and healthy life, the ability to acquire information, the ability to have freedom, dignity, and self-respect for others, and the ability to access resources necessary for a reasonable standard of living. The situation in which one group benefits and is given every opportunity for growth while another group suffers and is denied that opportunity raises various problems in academia and in general society. All world leaders who attended the UN Social Summit in Geneva in 2000 reaffirmed their commitment to social protection as a core issue in poverty alleviation. They also ratified the Millennium Declaration, which aims to combat global poverty and other related issues. The dual issues of material hardship and the experience of limited civil and political rights were highlighted during this event, making a compelling argument for exposing the hazards of social exclusion and its influence on long-term human development (World Bank, 2007). 2 Ghana has achieved extraordinary economic and political stability over the last eight years, according to a large body of empirical and statistical evidence. Despite these accomplishments, there is a growing view that a significant number of people and groups are not benefiting from the improvements accomplished thus far. Before we can talk about poverty reduction in Ghana, we need to break the poverty cycle that has been in place for so long. Low incomes, as well as a lack of savings, characterize this situation. Low savings lead to a scarcity of funds for investment, which in turn leads to a lack of investment. Low investment leads to low output, which leads to low income, which leads to low savings, and the poverty cycle continues.

In Ghana, poverty patterns vary depending on the economic sectors. In Ghana, poverty is most visible in two sectors: agriculture and the informal economy, with the agricultural sector suffering the most. In addition to agriculture, 29% of individuals working in informal and small businesses are poor (UNDP, 2007). It was also discovered that the incidence of poverty is decreasing across the board. Food crop producers are the poorest, according to the absolute data, as compared to people engaged in other activities. They had the highest poverty rate of 68 percent in 1991/92, but it dropped to 46 percent in 2005/06. According to the Ghana Poverty Reduction Strategy document (Ghana Statistical Service, 2005b), the Upper East area has a poverty rate of 7 out of 10 people. Although both men and women in the region are affected by poverty, institutional structures and socio-cultural factors tend to concentrate scarce resources in the hands of men, forcing women to rely on men for resources and, as a result, restricting their access to education and training. Furthermore, gender-based discrimination against women, combined with religious and cultural limits, tends to limit the amount of time to which they may access and use information and resources, as well as take advantage of educational and training opportunities. As a result, women’s potential to rise out of poverty and contribute to national economic progress is harmed.

There is a link between human development and poverty, according to Ghana’s Human Development report (Ghana Statistical Service, 2007). According to a study conducted in Ghana, a 1% improvement in the Human Development Index (HDI) is connected with a 0.27 percent reduction in poverty. The HDI and the poverty rate have a negative association. Poverty rates drop as HDI rises. Navrongo is the capital of Ghana’s Upper East Region’s Kassena/Nankana East District. Navrongo is one of Northern Ghana’s oldest educational towns. Navrongo has a population of 15983 people (2000 population and housing census figures). There are 7615 men and 8368 females in this group. In Navrongo, a number of educational institutions have been created, ranging from primary to university levels. The Navrongo population, particularly women, who should have profited from these services, have been left out (Awumbila, 2001). 4 A large number of agricultural fields are available for the growth of a wide range of food crops. The Tono Irrigation Dam, which covers 300,000 hectares of irrigable land, is also near Navrongo. Poverty is a severe issue for women in Navrongo, both in the city and in the countryside. This age-old issue is considered to be economically, culturally, and socially significant. Poverty may be a more serious problem than conventional data collection can reveal. Most sections of Ghana, particularly Northern Ghana and the Upper East Region, appear to be becoming increasingly impoverished. The phenomenon appears to resist all social, economic, and political recommendations, as well as a number of government interventions over time. This research looked into the effectiveness of education and training as a technique for reducing poverty among women in Navrongo, Kassena/Nankana East District, by increasing their capacity to access economic, social, and political resources.

1.2 Statement Of Problem

According to the Ghana Human Development Report (Ghana Statistical Service, 2007), poverty levels were declining, with 28.5 percent of Ghanaians classified as poor in 2005/2006, down from 29.5 percent in 1998/1999. The number of people classified as “very poor” dropped from 26.8% to 18.2%. Between 1991 and 2006, the incidence of poverty in female-headed households decreased from 43% to 19%, whereas the incidence of poverty in male-headed households increased from 55% to 31%. The difference of 24% between male-and female-headed households demonstrated that when women are given resources and a voice, poverty among women decreases. Despite these gains, the research found that the disparity between the rich and the poor has grown. “Females, the urban poor, the rural poor, the disabled, the less educated, and people living in the Northern Savannah ecological zones in general have fared worse on several indices of development, including education, literacy levels, HIV/AIDS prevalence rates, access to health, and facilities for hygienic disposal of human waste,” it stated. This highlighted the importance of closing the disparities in social exclusion. At all levels of society, it is critical to work for a more inclusive society in the country, “(Ghana Statistical Services, 2007, p.55). In terms of critical dimensions of human development, the divide between the three Northern Regions and the Southern Regions must be bridged. Empirical research based on well-disaggregated data should be conducted in order to carefully identify the reasons and address them with care. As a result, it is necessary to depoliticize the issue and deemphasize ethnic feelings. As a result, the researchers intended to look into and establish the link between women’s education and training and poverty reduction in Navrongo.

Poverty is defined as a lack of basic necessities, including food, clothing, housing, and safe drinking water, all of which affect one’s quality of life. It may also refer to a lack of access to options such as education and employment, which help people escape poverty and/or earn the respect of their peers (World Bank, 2009). 6 Farmers and small-scale business owners predominate in Navrongo, which is located in the Kassena/Nankana District of the Upper East Region. The high level of material hardship among the people has resulted in a large outflow of young people (mainly girls) to Ghana’s southern regions. Poverty causes people to be socially excluded from every given society. Poverty is thus one of the greatest impediments to women’s engagement in their communities’ cultural, economic, and political activities. Isn’t this the scenario that most Ghanaian women, including the women of Navrongo in the Kassena/Nankana District of Ghana’s Upper East Region, have found themselves in?

1.3 Objective Of Study

The following are objective of this study:

  1. To role of women’s education on women’s empowerment.
  2. To examine the relationship between women’s education and poverty reduction in Navrongo
  3. To examine if educational levels attained can lead to access to employment in Navrongo

1.4 Research Questions

The following research question guides this study:

  1. What are the roles of education of women’s empowerment?
  2. Is there any relationship between women’s education and poverty reduction in Navrongo?
  3. Can educational level attained lead to access to employment in Navrongo?

1.5 Significance Of Study

The availability of a resource determines the growth of any culture or group. Human resources are considered to be the most important aspect of every development project. The amount of education and training provided to a country’s human resources determines the quality and calibre of that country’s human resources. As a result, education is crucial in alleviating poverty. This study had to be done in Navrongo to see how education affected poverty reduction. The study aided the Navrongo community, the District Assembly, and other stakeholders in taking proper actions to educate women in order to alleviate poverty. Despite the fact that the research was limited to Navrongo, the findings were expected to be useful to other communities, states, and organizations striving to reduce poverty among women. The findings’ public release will aid women’s organizations, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), governments, and communities working to alleviate poverty in adopting proper education that will empower women to rise above their circumstances.

This research will add to the existing literature in this field and will also act as a resource for scholars, researchers, and students who may want to do future research on this or a comparable topic.

1.6 Scope Of Study

This study focuses on examining the relationship between women’s education and poverty reduction, the role women’s education on women’s empowerment, and examining if educational levels attained can lead to access to employment. This study will therefore be carried out in Navrongo in Ghana, using selected women as enrolled participants for this study.

1.7 Limitation Of Study

Finance, inadequate materials and time constraint were the challenges the researchers encountered during the course of the study.

1.8 Definition Of Terms

Women Education:

Women’s education can be regarded as a kind of knowledge given to women for enhancing their self-respect and self-dignity. This knowledge can be in form of formal, non-formal and informal education, it can also be in form of Adult Education, Community Development, Workshops, Seminars, Conferences and Training.

Poverty Reduction:

This is a set of measures, both economic and humanitarian, that are intended to permanently lift people out of poverty.

Chapter Two

Review Of Literature


Our focus in this chapter is to critically examine relevant literature that would assist in explaining the research problem and furthermore recognize the efforts of scholars who had previously contributed immensely to similar research. The chapter intends to deepen the understanding of the study and close the perceived gaps.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the effect of Education on poverty?

The direct effect of education on poverty reduction is through increasing the earnings/income or wages. The indirect effect of education on poverty is important with easier and raises the living standard which surely m eans the fall in human poverty. The education indirectly helps women’s behavior in fertility decisions and family planning [2].

Does women empowerment reduce household poverty?

The results show that women empowerment positively and significantly contributes towards household poverty reduction.

What is the poverty empowerment project?

It will also serve as a reference material to students and those who want to embark on similar study. Poverty is a general phenomenon in the world. But this project work is limited to the empowerment of women in order to reduce poverty with particular reference to Kogi State. The project shall cover between 1999 till date.

Does education reduce poverty in Ghana?

Generally, poverty levels in Ghana have reduced over the past decade. Still, extreme poverty increased from 2.2 million in 2013 to 2.4 million in 2017. This study was conducted to assess the nexus between education and poverty reduction in Ghana.

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