Previously, Umwalimu SACCO conducted meetings with its members at their respective schools during break hours. However, this approach proved inadequate for reaching a significant number of members simultaneously and providing a comprehensive understanding of the cooperative’s offerings. To ensure members grasp the benefits and requirements of Umwalimu SACCO’s services and, in turn, improve their livelihoods, a new strategy was required.
The sector-level outreach program serves as a dynamic platform for Umwalimu SACCO to directly interact with a large number of members, fostering discussions about the cooperative’s services, the challenges members face when accessing these services, and seeking their input on improving service delivery.
Ms. Laurence Uwambaje, the Director General of Umwalimu SACCO, explained the rationale behind this sector-level approach, stating, "We noticed that there is still a gap in the sensitization of schools and members on different products offered by Umwalimu SACCO. This outreach program at the sector level will help us reach a larger number of members and provide them with consistent information. Our primary goal is to enhance members’ financial literacy, particularly with regard to our new products."
She added, "We will use this opportunity to provide financial education to members and encourage them to embrace the culture of savings, which is the foundation of their future financial stability."
This year’s outreach campaign will span 10 districts, including Kirehe, Nyabihu, Ngororero, Gisagara, Bugesera, Gakenke, Muhanga, Rusizi, Gatsibo, and Huye Districts. Events will be held at two identified sites within each district, with an expected audience of at least 9,719 teachers across these districts.
The outreach campaign in these districts unfolds in four distinct rounds, each with its unique schedule.
The initial round, encompassing Kirehe, Nyabihu, and Ngororero districts, successfully took place on November 4th, 2023.
The second round, focusing on Gisagara, Bugesera, and Gakenke districts, is diligently planned for November 11th, 2023.
Moving forward, the third round is poised to cover Muhanga, Rusizi, and Gatsibo districts, and it is scheduled for November 18th, 2023.
Lastly, the fourth and final round, which centers on the Huye district, is eagerly anticipated and will come to fruition on December 2nd, 2023.
Umwalimu SACCO acknowledges the importance of placing its members at the center of its operations in today’s banking and financial services landscape. The member outreach program serves as a direct channel for the cooperative to understand and respond to the needs of its members while building strong relationships.
"We invite our members to provide us with feedback and suggestions, particularly on how we can better serve them. Our commitment lies in aligning with members’ expectations and ensuring their satisfaction," noted Ms. Uwambaje.
Throughout this outreach program, Umwalimu SACCO is dedicated to accomplishing several vital goals. These include responding to members’ queries about the cooperative’s products and services, actively soliciting feedback and recommendations from teachers to enhance service quality, and providing education to members on the importance and advantages of adopting a savings culture.
Additionally, the program seeks to motivate members to consistently save a portion of their income from income-generating activities and deposit it into their Umwalimu SACCO accounts.
Furthermore, the outreach program is a platform for informing members about GIRA IWAWE mortgage loans and introducing them to the latest digital services, such as the E-Tax Payment system, Internet Banking, and Mobile App.