Financial Inclusion for Women and Men in Artisanal Gold Mining Communities: A Case Study from the Democratic Republic of the Congo


Reichel, Victoria. 2019. "Financial Inclusion for Women and Men in Artisanal Gold Mining Communities: A Case Study from the Democratic Republic of the Congo." The Extractive Industries and Society. In Press.

Author: Victoria Reichel


This article presents results from a community-led savings and credit project implemented by the Canadian non-governmental organization IMPACT in six artisanal gold mining communities in Ituri Province of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The Artisanal Mining Women's Empowerment Credit & Savings project (known in French as Autonomisation des femmes par l’épargne et le crédit communautaire responsible or AFECCOR) supports more than 1400 women and men in artisanal gold mining communities to access savings and credit by establishing Village Savings and Loans Associations (VSLAs).
While international development efforts increasingly focus on the formalization of the artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) sector, how to improve the sector’s access to formal financial services, including through microfinance, has not yet been fully explored. The results from the AFECCOR project are among some of the first documented experiences of introducing VSLAs into artisanal mining communities where they can positively contribute to cover basic financial needs.

Keywords: financial inclusion, artisanal gold mining, ASM, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Village Savings and Loan Associations, VSLA, microfinance

Topics: Economies, Extractive Industries, Gender, Political Economies Regions: Africa, Central Africa Countries: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Year: 2019

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