Tamil Nadu Women's Development Project
Women were the exclusive target of this IFAD-initiated project, and they passed the benefits on to their families in terms of improved living conditions. The project introduced microfinance schemes as the principal tool for empowering women through income-generating activities.
The promotion of dynamic, cohesive women’s groups was a major component of the project. The formation of federations of groups was a key to sustainability. Repayment rates for revolving credit were good, and women were eventually able to obtain credit from formal sources. More than half of the loans were used to finance livestock activities. Participating women gained confidence and awareness.
Through collective action, groups were able to negotiate and obtain improved services and access to drinking water, electricity, health care and education. The project demonstrated that loans based on group collateral can be commercially viable.
26 April 1989
1989 - 1998
Credit and Financial Services
Total Project Cost
US$ 30.6 million
US$ 17 million
Domestic Financing Institutions US$ 9.1 million
National Government US$ 4.5 million