The members of the Executive Committee of the ICT Teachers Association of Uganda (ITAU) are in advanced stages of establishing the ITAU SACCO, which is one of the objectives listed in the consitution of the association. ITAU Objective 12 states, “To establish and run a SACCO to help the members access financial services which can simplify the acquisition of assets necessary for their work such as computers and for personal development;”.
The Savings and Credit Cooperative (SACCO) is one of the projects the executive hopes will raise revenue to sustain ITAU financially, in addition to attracting donations from government and other partners.
The resolution to form a SACCO for ICT Teachers in Uganda was reached during the previous Executive meeting which was held on 7th January, 2019 at Makerere University.
The progress so far
A team of executive members were assigned with the duty of investigating, from the appropritate authorites, the requirements for establishing a SACCO. After a visit to The Registrar of cooperative societies, Ministry of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives (MTIC), Room 608, Floor 6, Farmers House, Parliament Avenue, the members were given a check list of all requirements, which are summarised in the graphic below, adopted from the MTIC website:
Executives fundrasing towards SACCO establishment costs
As you may have noticed in the checklist above, funds were required for buying the SACCO bylaws and paying the SACCO registration fee. The executive members, through their private whatsapp group, quietly fund raised, and below are the contributions which were made through direct deposits to our National Tresurer’s mobile money account:
NB: For a list of distinguished members who have made financial contributions towards meeting ITAU costs since inception, visit the attribution page.
Purchasing the SACCO books
After the executives had finished to fundraise, our National Treasurer, Madam Nambone Jackline, went back to the Ministry to obtain the books. She was accompanied by our National coordinator as they made consultations with the ministry officials. One of the things to consult about was the difference between a Savings and Credit Cooperative and a multipurpose cooperative. The officials advised that we could buy the books for both, study them and then make a decision together with the rest of the executive members.
We therefore bought the bye-law books for both a multipurpose society and also for a SACCO. We have also been making detailed consultations on their mode of operation and requirements for establishment.
After obtaining the books from the ministry, the Treasurer and Coodinator has a breif meeting at the laters’ new office at Open Schools academy, Africourts Building, on Buganda Road. Here they spent some time analysing the documents and brainstorming on the day’s findings.
The executives are studying these documents in order to make the best choice which will help us achieve ITAU objectives most effectively and conveniently.
Drawing inspiration of Uganda Medical Association
Uganda Medical Association (UMA) is a national professional Association with the membership exclusively drawn from medical practitioners. UMA is very powerful and usually makes positions which are recognised by the entire country.
They have both an association and a SACCO. We are benchmarking on thier SACCO bylaws which can be downloaded from here for inspiration.
UMA also has lots of partnets and donors who fund its various programs, a dream ITAU envisions to achieve in future.
The next Executive meeting
During our executive meeting which is already scheduled for women’s day 8th March, we shall consider, deliberate and reach resolutions on the following pending matters:
- Setting up the SACCO committee and required administrative staff to run the SACCO professionally.
- Setting the ammount the members are to pay as membership fee for joining the SACCO.
- The cost of each share in the SACCO.
- Starting to collect membership fee (this is one of the requirements on the checklist, we need a minimum of 30 paidup members with shares who have to be reflected in the SACCO’s financial schedule before registration.
- The idea of how automated mobile money payments through our website can help us collect the membership fees in a more streamlined, accountable way (easy pay mobile money gateway has already been implemented and tested on the shop (ictteachersug.net/shop) and now we can create a similar page for membership fees.
- Deciding on where the physical ITAU SACCO office (which is another requirement for SACCO registration) will be and how we shall meet its rent costs.
- This meeting would also help us concretize the National, Regional and Sub regional workplans and start executing the activities like regional workshops, writing and distributing letters and proposals to schools and potential partners, ITAU Tshirt, etc.
- Welcoming and briefing the newly elected members on the executive committee who were voted in the recent and ongoing by elections which will be held on 2nd – 4th March.
- Any other business such as ITAU shop commission rates, Advert rates etc.
Other work accomplished by ITAU in Jan/ Feb 2019
During the past month, we have taken a number of initiatives, which include the following:
Boosting Facebook Page: We paid some dollars to facebook for a sponsored ad for two days which boosted our page, as a way of reaching out to members out there who may not yet be aware of ITAU. Now we have over 300 likes on the ITAU page (fb.com/ictteachersug) and about 400 members in the ITAU group (fb.com/groups/ictteachersug).
ITAU -Shop / e-commerce: We have integrated Mobile Money, VISA and MasterCard payments on the ITAU eShop, powered by Easy Pay / Payline Holdings Limited. We also Submitted the KYC documents and our API usage has been approved and all limits removed. We intend the ITAU Shop to be another project which can generate some revenue for the Association, by earning some commission from all sales. All bonafide members will be free to sell / advertise thier products through the ITAU shop.
Multi-User ITAU Youtube Channel Activated: Youtube allows adding many users to the same channel if it is activated as a brand account, and we have done this activation on our ITAU YouTube Channel! With a brand account, we can add many users to add new videos to the channel simply by logging in with their own gmail address and switching to our youtube channel. Members who have some videos they can add to the channel, eg tutorials of previous UNEB Number attempts can now request to be added as users of the ITAU YouTube channel. Remember, all videos uploaded to our joint YouTube channel will automatically appear on our website at https://www.ictteachersug.net/youtube , where our channel has been auto embedded. We call upon the members to subscribe to the Channel so that we can get a customised channel address which requires atleast 100 Subscribers.
ITAU Google Classroom: We started up a google classroom for ICT Teachers, as another forum for members to keep in touch, interact and share. The Google Classroom does not have the challenges associatied with WhatsApp, e.g. very limited number of users (Google Classroom accomodates 1000 as compared to WhatsApp groups of 256 members only), Google classroom is not affected by social media tax, and also Google Classroom does not require members to have smartphones – members can simply login with thier existing gmail account at classroom.google.com to use it. Please join our google classroom by following the procedures in this article.
#ITAUArticleChallenge and the Google Ads on ITAU Website: Another project we have started to raise revenue for our dear association is to encourage and inspire members to write articles on our ictteachersug.net website every day. This will ensure that we get more traffic, which will in turn earn us some dollars from Google – In January we made an application to Google and successfully got thier aproval for a partnership to monetise our website through displaying thier ads on our website like the one which usually appears after the second paragraph of all posts. So now every click members or visitors make on the ads earns us some dollars. Lets support our association in this regard by posting more quality articles, and generating traffic so that we can earn more as we also constibute knowledge to the world wode web. A detailed report of all revenue sreams will be declared during the AGM and be reflected in the accounts of the association.
Reactivating the regional Whatsapp groups and adding more members: We created memorable links (west.ictteachersug.net(for ICT Teachers in western Uganda), north.ictteachersg.net (for ICT Teachers in northern Uganda) , central.ictteachersug.net (for ICT Teachers in central Uganda) and east.ictteachersug.net (for ICT Teachers in eastern Uganda) ) to make it easy for members to add thier colleagues as a way of moblisation for expanding the ITAU network. Since then, the groups are all gaining traction and membership is increasing. We call upon all members to memorise and keep recommending these link to their colleages who have not yet joined the network.
Uploading a Softcopy of the Final Registered ITAU Constitution:
During the previous executive meeting, Mr. Ssensarire Rajab volunteered to do this task and he accomplised it.
Wordcamp Entebbe: We are moblising the members to attend WordCamp Entebbe which will take place From 29th to 31st March, 2019 at Nkumba University. We are coordinating with the organisers of the wordcamp in Entebbe, and soon a detailed official stamped ITAU invitation letter will be released so that the members who need it to secure facilitation from thier schools can do so. Details and justification for attending the Wordcamp can be found on the event page here.
ITAU By Elections: Recently we made a call for nominations of members to fill the vacant posts on the executive at National, Regional and Sub regional level. This is a chance for members who love ITAU to join us as we make efforts to build an association that will stand a test of time and will live by to see its vision. Members who have not yet nominated themselves are urged to do so before the nominations deadline tomorrow. The nominations form can be found at nominations.ictteachersug.net.