Saving to empower the disabled : an impact study from rural Uganda
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- Master Thesis 
A billion people around the world live with disabilities, and 80% of them live in developing countries. Persons with disabilities are overrepresented among those who live in absolute poverty and they generally have poorer health, lower education and fewer economic opportunities than those without disabilities. This thesis examines how Village Savings and Loan Associations (VSLA) affect persons with disabilities (PWD) in rural Uganda. The project we examine, We Can Manage, was initiated by the Norwegian Association of Disabled (NAD) and National Union of Disabled Persons of Uganda (NUDIPU). Focus is to explore the project's effect on social empowerment and entrepreneurial traits in participants. A randomized controlled trial with survey and in-field lab experiment was conducted to examine how confidence, trust, happiness, locus of control, willingness to compete and willingness to take risk was impacted. We found that implementation of the VSLA increase PWDs willingness to compete, confidence in other villagers as well as locus of control. We also found an increase in locus of control for males. Our findings indicate that implementation of projects with VSLAs, such as We Can Manage, can have an empowering effect on its participants.