Mission, Value & Objectives

The overarching mission of KMVS is the total empowerment – economic, political and social – of rural women through their awareness-raising, organization and mobilization into local collectives capable of independently addressing gender inequities and engendering a sustainable, socio-economic transformation in the region.[1]  KMVS seeks to empower women such that they are capable and confident decision-making partners in village, community and regional development initiatives.
KMVS is based on the idea of collective empowerment.  Its central philosophy and guiding premise is that empowerment is a process women themselves must direct and promote in order to best affect change.  From this approach, women are not merely the beneficiaries of development or empowerment, but are the designers and implementers of the interventions themselves.  KMVS views itself as a catalyzing agent, providing women with resources or access to resources that will enable them to become agents of social change and exert greater control over their own lives.  KMVS defines women’s empowerment in the following ways:

  • Developing the confidence to articulate problems and needs in a supportive and energizing environment.
  • Developing the confidence and ability to question existing structures of suppression and the prevailing norms and environment that govern them.
  • Developing the ability to critically analyze the roots of suppression.
  • Assessing as a collective the information, training, skills and knowledge needed for decision-making and action
  • Developing increasing abilities to act on information
  • Making informed choices regarding their lives, livelihood, dignity and self-esteem
  • Gradually developing access to and control over resources and decisions regarding themselves, their families, their work and their environment
  • Understanding and using the interplay of formal and informal tools, skills and learning situations to manage and implement decisions and activities
  • Developing and controlling key institutions run by women, but for the benefit of both women and society at large[2]


KMVS believes there are four primary components to achieving women’s empowerment – increasing women’s security, improving women’s access to resources, enhancing women’s ability to become decision makers and effective leaders, and institutionalizing the change process.  To KMVS, empowerment lies at the intersection of these transformations.  Within each of these general areas are the specific issues that have formed the basis of all KMVS interventions.

[1] Ramachandran and Saihjee, p5-7.
[2] KMVS Annual Report, 2003-2005, p4.