True to its name “ArthUdgam” meaning “Origin of Money”, the essence of the foundation lies in enhancing the income generating abilities of the less privileged communities and thereby uplift their socio-economic quality of life. AUW is committed to become their partners in the journey of social and economic independence.
Given that women are the core of any family and hence the community at large, empowering women is integral for the overall socio-economic development. Education & economic empowerment are in turn two of the most important aspects for uplifting the status of women in India and as such micro enterprises can play a critical role in creating livelihood opportunities for them. We at AUW understand that and have, therefore, consciously decided to support and nurture these women in their entrepreneurial journey.
Since inception, AUW has reached out to over 12,000 women entrepreneurs engaged in businesses such as pottery, clay idol making, handloom (weaving, zari work, embroidery, etc.) beauty parlor, grocery shop, retail garment shop among many others. As of date, we have 10 branches covering over 525 villages across Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan and over 40 employees.
We currently have two key offerings for our members – Arth Jeevika & Arth Vridhhi:
1) Arth Jeevika is a group-based loan wherein 2 to 5 women come together as a group with each member agreeing to become the guarantor for the others to raise the loan. In this case, the loan size varies from Rs.10,000 to Rs.40,000 per member. The repayment structure is customized keeping the needs of the customers in mind and typically vary from 12 to 24 months.
Till Jun’18, we have cumulatively extended loans worth over Rs.32 crore to support women in growing their businesses.
While access to finance is important, we believe it is certainly not the only ingredient to ensuring their success. Therefore, our model starts with creating access to and control over finance and continues to provide access to knowledge, practical entrepreneurial and life skills as well as social support. Undoubtedly, access to elements of financial planning, digital literacy and credit decisions strengthens the women community.