World Council Marks Record Number of SWAMI Participants
Credit union best practices are discussed during a SWAMI session.
Madison, WI-World Council of Credit Unions
Strathmore-WOCCU Management Institute (SWAMI)
recently hosted a record number of students at
the November session in Nairobi, Kenya. Seventy-
two credit union (SACCO) leaders from eight
African countries participated in the three-tier
credit union certification program.
"The SWAMI program has made an impact in the
operations and management of many SACCOs in
Kenya. I graduated in June 2006 and my SACCO has
implemented most of what I learned based on the
SWAMI curriculum," explained Margaret Ngunjiri,
finance and administration manager, Jamii SACCO.
She continued, "In particular our SACCO has
improved in liquidity management. Policies have
been developed to cover all operational areas
and this assisted the board and management to
realize its potential. The introduction of new
products has attracted and retained members in
Kenya's Assistant Minister of Cooperatives,
Honorable Dr. David Mwenje acted as the keynote
speaker at the graduation. Anne Cochran,
president and CEO of Louisiana Credit Union
League and Rick Myxter of Pennsylvania Credit
Union League—two United States credit union
leaders involved in the development of the SWAMI
program—also spoke at the graduation ceremony,
along with World Council staff members Erick
Sile, project director and Catherine Ford, CDP
At the end of the week-long program, 18 tier
three SWAMI students graduated and joined the
growing ranks of SWAMI alumni, earning Certified
SACCO Professional (CSP) designation. Out of
this graduating class, 12 of the students were
managers and six were board members.
SWAMI participants pose for photo.
Angelica Kiboro, manager of Strathmore's
continuing education department shared that the
success of the program is seen by the growing
attendance of managers and board members, the
effectiveness and the value in credit union
training is seen in the numbers.
Prior to the graduation all SWAMI students
Alumni were invited to attend the 2nd Semi-
Annual Best Practices Session. During this event
alumni were invited to present on the
application of the CSP skills, by making
individual presentations to the group.
Samual Njguna, a SWAMI alum and Kenya Bankers
board member explained, "The training from SWAMI
has helped not only in my role as a board member
but in my day job as well. "WOCCU is making a
difference everyday with SWAMI. And like WOCCU
you can make a difference in your SACCO, every
"The responses we have received from all of
SWAMI graduates and alumni put the importance of
this type of program into perspective, not only
for Kenya's credit unions leaders but for others
throughout Africa," noted Catherine Ford, CDP
Some students in all three tiers of the
have been awarded scholarships and travel awards
with the assistance of the following donors:
CUNA Mutual Foundation, Louisiana Credit Union
League, Pennsylvania Credit Union Foundation,
American Heritage Federal Credit Union, ILCU
International Development Foundation, African
American CU Coalition, Southeast Regional Credit
Union School (SRCUS), Jim Lykins, and United
Nations Federal Credit Union.
World Council of Credit Unions is the global trade association and development agency for credit unions. World Council promotes the sustainable development of credit unions and other financial cooperatives around the world to empower people through access to high quality and affordable financial services. World Council advocates on behalf of the global credit union system before international organizations and works with national governments to improve legislation and regulation. Its technical assistance programs introduce new tools and technologies to strengthen credit unions' financial performance and increase their outreach.
World Council has implemented more than 290 technical assistance programs in 71 countries. Worldwide, 57,000 credit unions in 103 countries serve 208 million people. Learn more about World Council's impact around the world at www.woccu.org.