Evaluation of a Savings and Micro-Credit Program for Vulnerable Youth Women in Nairobi

Published: December 2005

This document presents Tap and Reposition Youth (TRY) and it's four-year initiative undertaken by the Population Council and K-Rep Development Agency (KDA). The overall aim of the project was to reduce adolescents' vulnerabilities to adverse social and reproductive health outcomes by improving their livelihoods options. The project targeted out-of-school adolescent girls and young women aged 16 to 22 residing in low income and slum areas of Nairobi. TRY used a modified group-based micro-finance model to extend integrated savings, credit, business support and mentoring to out-of-school adolescents and young women.

Key Findings

  • While Tap and Reposition Youth (TRY) participants and their controls had comparable income levels at baseline, at endline, girls who had participated in TRY had significantly higher levels of income compared to controls. Similarly, while their household assets were similar at baseline, at endline, the assets of TRY participants were considerably higher than their peers who had not participated in the program.
  • Comparing TRY savers and control savers, TRY participants had significantly more savings and were more likely to keep savings in a safer place, compared to control girls who were more likely to keep savings at home where they were at greater risk of being stolen or confiscated by parents, guardians or husbands.
  • Girls who participated in TRY demonstrated changes toward more liberal gender attitudes, compared to controls.
  • While their reproductive health knowledge was not significantly higher, there was some indication that TRY girls had greater ability to refuse sex and insist on condom use, compared to the controls.
  • The high rate of drop out from TRY, especially by younger adolescents, suggests that the model requires further examination and adaptation, in particular, to respond to the realities of vulnerable girls living in high HIV settings.

Populations Adolescent Girls, Poor, Urban, Women

Complementary Outcomes Sexual And Reproductive Health, Women's Rights

Publishers Population Council

Geographic Focus Africa (Eastern)-Kenya

Funded by Ford Foundation, United Kingdom Department for International Development