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Role of Women Organizations in Community Development: A Case Study of Orlu Agricultural Zone, Imo State
The paper analysed the role of women organizations in the development of rural communities in Orlu Agricultural zone of Imo state. Six communities were purposively selected from three Local Government Areas of the Zone for the study. Semi-structured questionnaire was used to collect data from 120 randomly selected women from the chosen communities from July to August 2005. Data analyses were achieved using simple descriptive statistics as percentages, frequency tables and ranking. Result of the study shows that women organizations/associations for the purpose of community development in the study area are formed at different levels (community, village, and kindred) and along different ties (religious, family and social). There was a remarkable high involvement rate of women organizations in the provision of infrastructural amenities as renovation/ furnishing of town halls (80%), renovation/equipment of village schools (81.7%), and churches (82.5%), and provision of communal environmental sanitation services (88.3%). Other development programmes include those aimed at economic and educational empowerment of women and community youths such as; provision of grants/loans for enterprise development of women (81.7%), award of scholarships to children of the community (77.5%), awareness creation on HIV/AIDS (94.2%), family health and child care programmes (81.7%), and other general health matters (60.0%). It was recommended among others that existing women organizations in the rural communities should be encouraged by way of adequate recognition, training and funding by the State and Local Government authorities.
Keywords: Women\'s organizations, rural community development, Imo state.
International Journal of Agriculture and Development Vol. 9 2007: pp. 85-91