Women Organisations in Rural Within the Context of Thresholds and Values: Case of Federation of Productive Women Associations in Bursa
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The concept of development, which is mostly associated with economic growth, has been dealt with under many different headings such as social, human and rural development in the recent years. Women's labor and initiative is of great importance for the sustainability of development. The inclusion of women in the development process, especially in terms of how to organize labor of rural women, and ensure the continuity of the created forces, poses a problem for many developing countries including Turkey. At this stage, village women's associations stand out as a concrete indicators of the inclusion of women in rural areas. The aim of the study is to identify the obstacles faced by women, who are expected to be an important part of development, in the process of meeting this expectation, and to reveal the change that occurs when these obstacles are overcome. For this purpose, the study focused on rural women's organizations and discussed the impact of village women's associations on women's struggle for existence. Within the scope of the research, the Federation of Productive Women Associations in Bursa was examined via face-to-face and in-depth interviews with 21 Village Women Associations that are members of the federation. Especially the difficulties and social thresholds encountered during the establishment phase of associations, and the effects of the success achieved by ensuring continuity after the establishment phase on women were emphasized. The research draws attention to the gains such as self-confidence, entrepreneurship and awareness brought about by the activities of associations in village women. In this context, the study also aims to set an example for all women in terms of revealing the impact of women's organization on both rural and social development.