Wednesday, 25 January 2012

The day spent with the MUDI Savings and Credit Co-operative (SACCO) on Wednesday was like old home week for us Prairie folk. 
This SACCO has grown from their original location operating out of a 40 foot shipping container into a facility that Dave says is about the size of his credit union office in Manitoba.  The Board, staff and 2700 members are understandably very proud of this accomplishment and they have had many visitors from near and far.   Mercy, the general manager, invited us to sign the guest book that she keeps (she was surprised and pleased to learn that Bev also keeps a guest book at home).   Looking through the pages of previous visitors it became apparent that the world of co-operatives is indeed small.  We see that many people that have Canadian Prairie roots have walked through the door before us. 

This helps us to feel a little closer to home but surprisingly it doesn’t feel so foreign here.  Blantyre is a large, well established city of about 2 million people and has the city infrastructure to support it.  Shopping malls with the expected types of chain and specialty stores – including Bata shoes – are widely available here.  We certainly didn’t expect to see that.
Thursday  we are back at MUDI and will meet with the full 7 person Board in the afternoon.   This Board is comprised of professional people from the 59 companies whose employees are members of this SACCO. We are looking forward to getting to know them and sharing some insights about their organization. 

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