PBM, PPAF to provide interest free loans to 25,000 woman

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Staff Report

ISLAMABAD

Pakistan Bait-ul-Mal (PBM) and Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund (PPAF) would jointly provide interest free loans to 25,000 women trained by 160 Women Empowerment Centres (WECs).

According to a  Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between the PPAF and PBM, both the institutions would help empowering the trained women under Ehsaas program to make them self sufficient.

Speaking at the MoU signing ceremony, Managing Director PBM Aon Abbas Buppi said PBM was taking tangible measures for the promotion and protection of women rights by accommodating them in the fields of healthcare, education, economy, rehabilitation and self-reliance with its WECs throughout the country. He also expressed his enthusiasm for the expansion of WECs in order to accommodate the maximum number of poor women across Pakistan.

Dr. Nishtar termed the new collaboration within Ehsaas, as a great initiative and hoped that it will benefit deserving women to graduate out of poverty, saying BISP was being mandated to run cash transfers, PBM’s role is to be responsible for demand side social protection whereas the PPAF has the responsibility for poverty graduation, said a press release.

Secretary Poverty Alleviation and Social Safety Division (PASSD) urged PBM and PPAF to work in close collaboration to help PBM’s women beneficiaries in acquiring demand driven skills and creating linkages between skilled women and interest free loans.

CEO PPAF, Qazi Azmat expressed the hope that this MoU will provide a strong framework for leveraging strengths between PBM and PPAF and advancing socio-economic transformation in lives of poor women.‘After being provided with the interest free loan, these women will also be given technical support for setting up their own enterprises, he added.

The key focus of Ehsaas is on closing the gender gap and women empowerment. Ehsaas seeks to link to existing and emerging livelihoods and community level programmes in ways that promote diverse income opportunities and enhance women’s control of resources in the household.