Pioneering programme to improve female economic empowerment in Mozambique
Ligada, meaning ‘connected’, is a six-year DFID-funded programme, which aims to link girls and women much closer with Mozambique’s economic growth.
Despite impressive growth in recent years, over half of Mozambicans still live in poverty. Households headed by women are more likely to be among this number, with women’s exclusion from decent economic opportunities a major cause. Just 4% of the workforce are employed in the formal sector, and 19–24 year old females in Mozambique’s cities suffer the highest unemployment rates in the country.
It is this group of young, urban and largely economically excluded women that the Ligada programme will focus on, aiming to improve their recruitment and retention in secure, well-paid jobs and provide them with better access to markets.
Driven in part by its overarching objective – finding out how to achieve female economic empowerment (FEE) in Mozambique by testing and learning – the programme has a truly unique structure and design. A long inception phase allows for decision making about the interventions that will take place to be informed by studies commissioned for the precise purpose of finding out what will work best.
Luize Guimaraes, OPM consultant and Ligada Programme Manager, said:
‘We’re delighted to be leading such an innovative project that will make a profoundly positive impact on the lives of young Mozambican women. With so many currently out of work, there’s great potential for making concrete improvements to their livelihoods by helping to secure work and greater market access. With such scope it would be easy to overstretch our resources, but the research we’re conducting in the inception phase of the programme is designed to help us effectively target our interventions.’
The OPM team is working with a number of partners on the project, all with a specific focus on one of four interconnected workstreams. Each of these partners and workstreams will help the programme achieve its objectives and engender real change for young women in Mozambique.
DFID Adviser Caroline Wood has been seconded to the programme team, providing technical support to the programme. In this blog piece, she describes the experience and excitement of beginning a project such as this