Women celebrate financial literacy training
12 May 2011
A joyful graduation ceremony for about 300 women from the Table Mountain area took place today, 12 May 2011 in the Maqongqo Community Hall under the auspices of the KwaZulu-Natal Financial Literacy Association and the Provincial Treasury.
KwaZulu-Natal Finance MEC Ina Cronjé handed out certificates with the SaveAct Board secretary, Mr Ilan Lax, as well as Mkhambathini Mayor, Councillor Thobekile Maphumulo.
In her address, Cronjé said the women provide good examples of pro-active people who do not want to be dependent on government for hand-outs for a living.
The women – all members of the SaveAct-promoted savings and credit groups – were recognised for their roles in establishing the member-led groups, and for their successful participation in an innovative financial education programme. The programme is designed to enhance the economic capacity and financial literacy of group members.
Since SaveAct, a local non-profit organisation was established in 2005, over 5 000 women and men have become members of SaveAct-promoted savings and lending groups in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN).
Umgungundlovu District Mayor, Councillor Yusuf Bhamjee, who visited the spaza shop of Ms Sizani Ngubane, with MEC Cronjé, said the KZN Financial Literacy Association will go from strength to strength with members of the likes of SaveAct. Ms Ngubane stated that since joining a SaveAct group in 2009, business has dramatically improved. Borrowing manageable amounts of money from the group at realistic interest rates has given her the opportunity to increase her stock and to build shelves for her goods.
The graduation ceremony was combined with the launch of the KZN Financial Literacy Association’s Women and Vulnerable Groups Committee. The Committee, chaired by Ms Audrey Matimelo, is one of five working groups focusing on raising financial literacy levels in various sectors of society.
Deputy chair of the committee and SaveAct Executive Director Anton Krone, said the event is the coming together of different sectors of society who are working together to tackle financial illiteracy and identify effective strategies to empower people to develop sustainable livelihoods.
He said the benefits of SaveAct group membership are wide-ranging, as members are able to build up lump sums that enable them to acquire assets, smooth out the bumps in consumption pressures, and cope better with shocks and invest in their own enterprises. An increasing number of men have also been joining the groups or establishing their own groups with the help of SaveAct.
“Financial literacy is everybody’s business,” said Cronjé. “Nobody can be self-reliant and achieve goals set for oneself if they are financially illiterate. Knowing how to wisely use one’s own money ensures growth in many forms and this contributes to creating financially stable families.”
The graduation and launch are among many other events that the KwaZulu-Natal Financial Literacy Association will roll out in various areas of the province, targeting different audience groups with the view to highlighting the importance of financial literacy in KwaZulu-Natal and the country.
See background on SaveAct.
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Issued by: KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Treasury
12 May 2011
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