The advantages of micro-credit lending programs and the human capabilities approach for women’s poverty reduction and increased human rights in Bangladesh

2012 IJRSM – Volume 1 Issue 2


Rouf, Kazi Abdur*
Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto, Canada (


Fifty percent of people all over the world are suffering from a lack basic needs. Even poor women are denied their equality of human rights. Equality of rights for these women would mean access to food, clothing, shelter, and credit as well as liberation from exploitative forms of income generation such as domestic work, child labor and trafficking. Women in Bangladesh suffer from inequality of rights on quite an unimaginable level and their socio-economic development has been largely impeded. Thus, these poor women depend on others to survive. Human capability services like education and skills development services are not generated nor tailored to them particularly at the village level which affects the basic human rights of these women. Without educational, health, economic and social services at the village grass-roots level, poor people suffer most in Bangladesh. Although the Constitution of Bangladesh appears to strongly approve gender equality and positive action that guarantees women’s full participation in social, economic and political life, it is clear that full support is absent. Ironically, the disadvantaged poor people specifically are struggling to fulfill their basic human needs and are aware of their basic human rights. Although some steps have been made to reduce gender inequality, some laws still lag behind and many discriminatory practices are found in the customary laws, which still remain in force. A solution that has offered to assist poor women in Bangladesh through micro-credit organizations (MFIs) like Grameen Bank credit, that create opportunities for these women to help educate themselves and overcome poverty in Bangladesh. However, human rights education at the grass roots level is very nominal. Hence focus on human rights education extension programs are urgently required to establish basic human rights.

Keywords: Grameen Bank; human rights; women human rights; micro-credit; feminization of poverty; participatory development; women empowerment



*Corresponding Author