This study analyzes costs and benefits related to participation from the perspective of women. Based on two samples in Chad and in Pakistan, this study employs quantitative and qualitative approaches. Social capital as well as the wealth status are identified as the most important determinants of participation of women. The empowerment of women, as well as an improved social network, belong to the most important benefits of participation. The reduction and mitigation of risk constitute a significant motivation to participate. Moral hazard and freeriding, both frequently described in the theoretical literature as typical problems of collective action, are encountered. However, these problems do not seem to enter the private cost-benefit calculation of individuals. This is more determined by time as well as financial constraints.