Nyaravur Farmers’ Cooperative Savings and Credit Society (SACCO) launched their new banking premises on Thursday 18th February. The new building was constructed with funding from aBi, under a two-year project titled “Improving Service Delivery and Increasing access to Financial Services in the rural areas”. The banking hall cost USh 240 million of the total aBi grant of, USh 369,377,080. The objectives of the project are to:
- Improve the SACCO image and delivery of their products and services through the construction of a new banking hall.
- Improve operational efficiency and loan repayment through MIS upgrade.
- Improve client outreach in Nebbi, Pakwach and Zombo Districts through product development and refinement.
According to the aBi Product Manager Financial Services Development, Mrs. Irene Sekamwa Kajoro, this is one of the eight projects that are being implemented in the Northern and Eastern regions of Uganda, as part of aBi’s funding window that was launched in 2019, titled, “Expanding financial services in Northern and Eastern Uganda through strengthening Microfinance Tier IV institutions.”
The initiative is in line with aBi’s Business Plan 2019 – 2023, specific result of, “increased smallholder farmers and agribusiness access to serviceable financial services”. aBi deliberately makes interventions aimed at enhancing growth in agribusiness savings through increased loans volumes of beneficiary farmers.
Nyaravur was faced with challenges of limited space (small office space) amidst increasing SACCO operations, inefficiency characterized by long turn-around
time in service delivery e.g loan processing and reporting; low security levels for the SACCO valuables, lack of an integrated information system, low staff capacity in credit management & marketing among others. These problems were largely due to the inadequate financial resources.
According to aBi’s Grants Management Controller, Ms. Anita Namata, Nyaravur’s initial status was deserving support. She adds that the SACCO had a very ‘humble’ beginning with no infrastructure in place. “Even the meetings with Nyaravur staff to discuss the grant proposal were held in the open, under a tree shade for lack of sufficient office space”.
Benefits from the project
Addressing the guests, at the launch, the Nyaravur Board Chairperson, noted that the banking hall will solve the problem of lack of privacy and security leading to enhanced clientele confidence in the institution. “Previously, our members would doubt the security of their funds and assets. One would not think of keeping
his 10 million with us because of a weak structure that meant vulnerability. However, with the new building, we will secure the documentation and all other assets”. Furthermore, the banking hall will enhance visibility, image and trust in the SACCO.
In addition to the new banking hall, the SACCO staff were trained, the MIS system upgraded and the SACCO branches are now interconnected, with standby generators which all ensure efficiency. “We anticipate over 30% income growth in the new year.” adds the Chairperson.
In her remarks, Ms. Irene Sekamwa Kajoro appreciated Nyaravur for meticulously implementing the project within the stipulated time.
She noted that aBi values performance, quality and perfection; and the fact that Nyaravur has demonstrated the capacity to handle grants from even other development partners.
She appreciated other Development Partners like TRIAS for working together in strengthening the institutional capacity of Nyaravur SACCO which put the SACCO at a level where they can qualify to participate in competitions for grant support
About Nyaravur SACCO
Nyaravur SACCO is a member owned SACCO, with close to 15,000 shares. Registered in 1999 by the Registrar of Cooperatives, it is located in Nyaravur trading centre, Nebbi district. Has a branch in Zombo district and is serving population in 3 districts of Nebbi, Pakwach, Zombo and the neighbouring areas in West Nile sub region. Nyaravur is governed by the AGM where the Board and other key functions are elected. It has over 12,000 savers and the membership has grown to 7,184 (in 2020) from 5,053 in 2018.