More than 40% of mothers in SA are single parents. How can EWA help a much needed section of the market?

Did you know that women make up the majority of financially vulnerable groups in South Africa? The gender wage divide, cultural norms around education and childcare that favour males and a lower premium placed on unskilled female labour mean that women bear the brunt of the country’s flagging economy, whether employed or unemployed.

According to StatisticsSA, 41.8% of households in South Africa are female-headed, which amounts to a total of approximately 7.2 million single mothers. For many South African women, having a job does not guarantee being able to meet monthly household expenses or cope with financial emergencies.

Having an Earned Wage Access (EWA) solution incorporated into your organisation can help this underserved market make ends meet and give them access to necessity items, helping them stretch their money further each month. Here’s how:

What is Earned Wage Access?

Paymenow is an earned wage access provider and dedicated to helping indebted and struggling South African workers access their wages at any time during their earning cycle to reduce dependence on loans and become financially resilient. Earned wage access gives employees access to a flexible payment schedule that allows them to cover financial emergencies or shortfalls and retain financial control rather than borrowing from the employer or seeking out alternative loan solutions.

The impact of Earned Wage Access for female-led households

Despite any intention to save for emergencies and longer term, women are under more financial pressure when compared with men because they are more vulnerable to debt traps (because they often earn less) and typically carry the burden of raising children and managing households. This is blatantly unfair and earned wage access has proved that employers can help to change the status quo.

An analysis of our recent transaction data proves just how vital earned wage access is proving for South Africa’s female employees.

To date, 45% of the advances we have facilitated have been for women, amounting to over 400 000 transactions with a value of R110million. Without access to their hard-earned salary before payday, the only recourse these women would have had would be family, friends and loan sharks.

The top reasons for advance requests from women through Paymenow ranked by value are transportation costs, food, medical emergencies, school fees, bill payments and monthly utility costs. When the unexpected happens, give them a lifeline. Give them access to their earned wages.

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