ASSESSING EMPOWERMENT OF RURAL POOR WOMEN IN BANGLADESH
This research was conducted at selected eight different villages under Sadar Upazila of Mymensingh district in Bangladesh to identify the performance women empowerment under job and non-job group of rural poor woman. Research mainly based on primary data, collected using pretested questionnaire by simple random sampling method during the period of January to February 2015. Women’s Empowerment in Agriculture Index (WEAI) and multiple regressions have been used for analysis. Results showed about 33% and 70% of women were empowered and their inadequacy score was 81% and 24% under non-job and job group, respectively. The contribution of non-job group to dis-empowerment index (MoMymensingh) was 83.33% suggests bear a disproportionate share of poverty whereas contribution of job-group to MoMymensingh was 16.67%. That is why the value of WEAI increased from 0.72 in non-job group to 0.95 job group. Result shows that those women who are related with earning job are more empowered than non-job group. So, enhancing earning source of women may be a possibility to make the non-job group women to be more empowered. On the other hand, rural poor women under both groups opined firstly the education followed by social status, financial support, age-gap with her husband and family planning. So, women dis-empowerment also can be removed by increasing education. Results also showed the number of empowered women had decreased significantly by 0.45 and 0.006 persons per year age-gap and per thousand taka income-gap between husband, and wife, respectively had increased. Therefore, to increase empowered women needs to increase the number of educated earning rural women.