After three years of active support for the creation of 130 women Village Savings and Loans Associations within the district of Sironko, in Eastern Uganda, Seeds steps up a notch and now launches the transformation of those groups into one major Savings and Credit Cooperative. This second step will prove to be as pragmatic as it is essential to the social and economic developments of the rural communities with whom we’ve been working for the past years. We are setting sail for a new dynamics: combining the development of individual savings and loans with shared and needed business ressources.
As we stay true to our way of proceeding, this new dimension finds its source at the community level. The project is indeed the fruit of many discussions with the implicated actors, meaning both the representatives of all VSLA groups as well as with our local partner, NEW Foundation. No need to emphasize on the degree of enthusiasm that envelops this innovative project, which should be constituted of no less than 4600 members.
The first advantage of this «cooperatisation» will be its very nature: the solidarity between its members and their shared economic and social development. Should we not forget that it was the crisis that gave birth to cooperatives in Europe. Those were designed in order to rebuild our agriculture in the post-war period, and previously to face the terrible agriculture crisis in the end of the XIXth Century. Because every crisis spurs rapprochements, mutualisation and solidarity. Yes, Uganda does not know crisis per se. However the symptoms of its economic and social problems look similar enough.
Definitely a promising project. Launching it in a few days, we’ll keep you posted!