6.6.2 For Low-Income Rural Populations, Offer Comprehensive, Low-Risk Packages

In both entrepreneurship and workforce development, young people facing multiple barriers, with low physical, skill and social assets, need a comprehensive package of services. This often includes education and training, technical and inter-personal job readiness, financial support, links to on-the-job training and employment, life skills and social support, mentorship and career advice. Some programs serving the very poor recognize that people living in poverty often need to manage multiple objectives – including family obligations – and need to take manageable risks reflected in a stepped process, rather than a sudden, risky shift in lifestyle. Such interventions are intense, and long-term.

Girls’ Education and More

The Campaign for Female Education (Camfed)1 focuses on girls and involves communities in providing comprehensive support to help girls grow-up healthy, educated, employed in good jobs, and engaged as participants and leaders in peer support network – Cama - designed to last a lifetime, and to expand with the horizons of its members. Operating in Ghana, Malawi, Tanzania, Zambia, and Zimbabwe, Camfed works with communities to identify the poorest girls – many of whom are orphans, who passionately want to continue their education, but whose families are unable to pay. Camfed then supports communities, schools and an ever-expanding network of graduates to provide girls with:

  • Scholarships for secondary education
  • Training for future employment and safe, productive livelihoods: options include business and financial literacy, health activism, information technology, and teaching
  • Peer support, mentorship and leadership opportunities through Cama, a 20,000 member network of graduates, with its foundation at the community level.

Results: Founded in 1993, Camfed has replicated its model in more than 3,200 communities. The Cama network has more than 20,000 members, all graduates from Camfed supported education and/or training.


  • 1. Believing every child has the right to an education, Camfed uses a community-based, holistic approach to bring about change in Africa. Camfed educates girls and supports young women to become leaders of change.