Sacco strives to mobilize savings and economically empower its members in their quest to attain financial freedom
By Catherine Kuria
A savings and credit cooperative’s (sacco) objective is to pool savings for the members and in turn provide them with credit facilities. The general objective of saccos is to promote the economic interests and general welfare of their members. Mhasibu Sacco Society Limited was formed in 1986 to serve members engaged in the accounting profession including inter alia: qualified accountants yet to be members of ICPAK, students of KASNEB & ACCA, employees of institutions that offer training in accounts as well as the spouses and children of existing members.
However, the sacco now boasts of open membership to professionals in all sectors of the economy. The registration of Mhasibu Sacco 32 years ago was spearheaded by the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya (ICPAK) which was driven by the goal to provide savings and credit facilities to its members.
From a paltry 37 members in 1986, the Sacco now boasts of a membership of more than 19,000 and has elaborate marketing plans to maintain the growth trend. During the 2018 Ushirika Day celebrations, Mhasibu Sacco emerged the best managed sacco in Nairobi County with an asset base of nearly Kshs. 5 billion. Out of the 2, 500 cooperatives in Nairobi, Mhasibu is the only society that holds an expo for its members.
The Sacco is managed by a nine-member board and a three member supervisory committee who are elected at the Annual General Meeting. Mr. Andrew Bulemi, the chairman Mhasibu Sacco says: “Mhasibu is privileged to have a wealth of diversity in its membership both locally and abroad which is not very common in Kenya. While such diversity may come with associated challenges, the sacco has fostered unity of purpose among members and is proud to say that the results have been a resounding success.”
Mhasibu also holds a unique position as a sacco that has a board and management team who are professionals in either finance, management or other business areas. In that regard, all its decisions are carefully thought through before being implemented. The sacco also gives back to the community and in that vein, it has constructed a sanitation unit at Hesana Children’s home that houses over 80 children in Githunguri township.
In addition, the best performing student in KCSE from the home is sponsored to study accountancy at Githunguri College. Mhasibu also finances two awards annually for the best KASNEB student in quantitative techniques
The Sacco recently held its 2nd annual 3-day expo at the Nairobi Railways Club. The expo brought together members who interacted and showcased their products and services. Trade shows, exhibitions and conferences are important to organizations and their professional staff. No matter the career or discipline, these events provide organizations with opportunities to meet specific goals and objectives. Whether you are an attendee or an exhibitor, there are benefits to being involved.
Key note speakers included: Mr. Oltesh Tobias, a motivational speaker of great repute, Mr. Bonnie Kim, a renowned international speaker, author, trainer and strategist and Mr. Chris Odongo. Madam Dolphin Arena, the Director of Cooperatives in Nairobi County was present and officiated the opening ceremony of the expo.
She commended the sacco for the good work it has been doing and encouraged the members to keep on mobilizing their savings. “Mhasibu is amongst the giant cooperatives not only in Nairobi County but also in the country and its liquidity is good,” she said.
The chief executive officer of Mhasibu, Mr. Antony Kahoru welcomed the members to the expo and urged them to visit all the stands, interact and exchange ideas that could grow their businesses. He also encouraged the non-members who were present to join the sacco so that they could grow together. Those who attended were treated to a master class on each day of the expo.
There were fun activities for the children on the last day of the expo, including entertainment from Churchill Show comedians Njoro and Smart Joker. There also were financial literacy classes for the children because as they say, it is never too early to learn how to save. The kids had full access to a play ground packed with a bouncing castle, trampoline, geodesic dome, metal slide and teeters-totters. They were also treated with the latest hit songs where they danced and sang along.
This Sacco that is guided by excellence, integrity, innovation, teamwork, fairness and social care as its core values has come a long way since its inception and is not slowing down any time soon.