Welcome to the Canadian Co-operative Association's international development blog devoted to the Uganda/Malawi and Ghana coaching programs taking place in January 2011. With volunteers working on the frontline of development, experience the missions through their photos, words and videos.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Another day "At the Office" - Blake Reynolds - Malawi

Today was mine and Erin's second day "at work", and I think we are hitting our stride!  I honestly did not know what to expect going into this, and even though I won't get much pity from my family and friends in New Brunswick ,Canada currently enduring -35 Celsius temperatures (yes it was probably 25 Celsius this morning but it WAS muggy), I can honestly say that this is work... it just happens to be very rewarding and enjoyable work! 

Erin & I in front of Fodya SACCO

We had some wonderful conversations with Rita and Brian of Fodya (Chichewa for tobacco) SACCO (Credit Union), which is a closed-bond SACCO which serves the Alliance One tobacco refinery in Lilongwe.  We were also fortunate to meet and speak with Fodya's board treasurer Wilson and Oscar Phiri the board president. Both Rita and Brian are working full time at the SACCO while going to college studying accounting and couldn't be more enthusiastic! Though part of a small SACCO, Brian and Rita truly see their work as more than a job, and often refer to their roles and the role of the once struggling SACCO "in the movement".  Mr. Phiri proudly talked with us about Fodya's early struggles including an exodus of some members to being awarded MUSCCO's 2009 "Most Improved SACCO".
Rita, Oscar and Brian with their MUSCCO "Most improved SACCO" award.

Sunyani Teachers Credit Union - Heidi Hyokki - Ghana

We spent our first coaching experience at the Sunyani Teachers Credit Union.  The credit union welcomed us with open arms and I can't say enough about their hospitality and how open they were to us, it was wonderful....what a great first experience for me.

So we went over their books at the Sunyani Teachers Credit Union and met with their board to answer all of our questions, they are a very organized credit union with a beautiful building and a great future ahead of themselves as they have such a solid background in place including an excellent business plan.  I'm looking forward to how we can help them become even more successful in their community as they so want to be able to give back. 
A great quote today comes from the Mission Statement of the Sunyani Teachers Credit Union:

"The ultimate aim of the Union is to improve the living standards of teachers, their families, and the people within this community."

It is such an honour to be here working with these talented people who are so passionate about making a difference in their communities and the people who live in them!  Wow....now that's exactly what a credit union is all about!

No comments:

Post a Comment