Bowku Village, Ghana
Adjoa is the youngest of four wives and spends most of her time in the field tending the grain and corn crops. The other wives share the household chores, but Adjoa prefers working communally on the farm with the other women in the village, instead of spending time alone in the kitchen over a hot smoky fire.
Last year, CARE helped Adjoa form a thirty-member women's savings and credit association. Having access to loans allowed the women to afford preventive health care items for their children, such as mosquito nets and medicine, that their husbands were hesitant to purchase. During their group meetings, the women also discussed family planning and women's rights. They discovered that they had a more powerful voice collectively than as individuals. Gradually, they became less shy about speaking out at community meetings, and now the women contribute substantially to the previously all-male village civic meetings. As word of the success of the Bowku women's group has spread, the women are being asked to help form women's associations in neighboring villages as well.