Empowerment of Women at Grassroots Level in Tanzania: The Case of Mvomero and Bahi Districts
The study to assess empowerment of women at grassroots level was conducted in Mvomero District in Morogoro Region and Bahi District in Dodoma Region. The overall objective of the study was to assess the extent to which women are involved in the decision-making process related to socio-economic development in their communities. Data was collected from 80 women respondents using questionnaire, in-depth interviews and focus group discussions. All of them indicated that they sometimes participate in decision-making process since they are represented in various development committees such as schools, health, water, etc. However, their proportion in relation to that of men was less than one-third. These findings indicate that women will not have a voice in decision-making process due to their limited number, particularly when it comes to voting. The study further found out that their attendance was irregular in meetings that discuss developmental activities mostly due to lack of time as a result of heavy workload at home, and meetings being called at inconvenient time. The study concludes that women are not empowered at grassroots level in the two districts, and that what made them to be in that position is their low education, ignorance and low status. The study recommends that men at grassroots level be sensitized to support women in their endeavour to empower themselves by shouldering part of the workload currently carried by women. It is further recommended that women be encouraged to form small business groups.