Ray Maota Ladies count money at a stokvel meeting.Stokvels attract more women than men,with 57% of women taking part, comparedto only 43% of men, the African Responsesurvey found.(Image: Bay State Banner)MEDIA CONTACTS• Mamapudi NkgadimaAfrican Response: MD+27 11 709 7888RELATED ARTICLES• SA to host 2012 business congress• Using exotic woods to tackle poverty• New homes for low-income families• Waste drive reaps rewardsSoweto resident Gerald Pitsoe treated himself to a slightly damaged silver-grey luxury sedan. But soon it’s going to be as good as new – thanks to the money he gets from his stokvel membership.“I don’t even have to ask the bank for a loan,” he says, of the funds needed to repair his pride and joy.Pitsoe, a Metro Police officer from Protea suburb in Soweto, belongs to a masigolisane (rotational) stokvel.In his stokvel there are more than 20 members who contribute weekly to a joint fund. Each Monday the collection of money is paid out to one member.His is typical of stokvels around the country.A stokvel is a group saving scheme, helping members with financial assistance when needed. They are set up by a group of friends or a community organisation to help save or invest, to provide for burials, to buy groceries in bulk, or even for special events like birthdays.“I like this type of stokvel. It helps you. You can use other people’s money for your own projects. But you must remember – you have to return the favour,” said Pitsoe.With rotational stokvels, members contribute a minimum of R1 000 ($120) a week into the pot. Amounts can go up to whatever people can afford.South Africans are such huge fans of this savings scheme that, according to a survey by African Response, R44-billion (US$529-million) is currently invested in stokvel savings.Survey tells the story of savingsThe nationwide survey of over 2 000 stokvel members conducted by African Response, a market research company, found that there are 811 830 stokvels in the country, with 11.4-million members.A recent All Media and Product Survey (AMPS) has found that 40% of South Africans belong to a stokvel. The AMPS was conducted by the South African Advertising Research Foundation, which uses surveys to determine target markets for products and services.Mamapudi Nkgadima, MD of African Response, said: “African Response sought to quantify this market in terms of size and value as well as shed some light on attitudes and behaviours.”She illustrated the numbers involved: “The population of a city made up of all South Africa’s stokvel members would be larger than any of our major metros, including Johannesburg, Pretoria, Cape Town and Durban.”Gauteng leads the figures with 24%, followed by Limpopo with 20%, KwaZulu-Natal with 14% and the North West with 12%. These four provinces make up 70% of the stokvel market.“Stokvel members are home owners, business owners, church members and people you work with,” says Nkgadima.Findings of the surveyThe survey broke down the types of stokvels.The most popular are savings, burial, grocery, birthday and investment stokvels.Savings stokvels are the most popular of all – 47% of people using stokvels belong to one.This is followed by burial society stokvels with 41%; followed by grocery stokvels with 20%. Investment stokvels account for 5% of the members.Savings stokvels mostly comprise 80% of people from urban areas; while birthday stokvels comprise younger members, with 66% between the ages of 16 and 34.Groceries stokvels are made up of 86% women.Higher income earners are attracted to investment stokvels.Nkgadima said: “Stokvel membership very much depends on individual needs, which is why there are different types. Birthday stokvels fulfil social needs and saving stokvels are joined for security needs.”The average contribution each month is R210 ($25), with burial societies having a lower than average contribution of about R115 ($14) per month.Investment stokvels generate much higher contributions – from between R300 ($36) and R500 ($60).The survey also found that the average number for stokvel members was 27.Nkgadima said: “Burial societies tend to have much higher membership numbers while investment and birthday stokvels are closer, more intimate friendship groups.”Stokvels attract more women than men, with 57% of women taking part, compared to only 43% of men.This only differs in investment stokvels with the majority being men at 52% and women at 48%.“Stokvels are no longer the domain of people in need of a collective pot for burials and groceries but provide a medium for which to learn about and jointly invest money with the aim of creating wealth and security for its members.”Some 66% of stokvels make use of financial institutions, while 34% still do not. Nkgadima sees this as a great opportunity for financial services to manage stokvel finances.People have different needs but their common factor is the need to save for a rainy day, while creating wealth and security for themselves.Different stokvels for different peoplePeople from different backgrounds, with differing needs, make use of the different stokvels.John Lebetso, an informal trader from Diepkloof in Soweto, is a member of three savings stokvels. He meets with other traders every Monday, Wednesday and Thursday to pay in their contributions and talk money matters.His stokvels have different minimum contributions, with the smallest being R300 ($36) and the highest being R1 000 ($120).Although Lebetso’s stokvels are paid out annually, members do have the opportunity to draw their money every six months. Money can also be borrowed from the stokvel, at 20% interest.“It helps a lot if you can’t save money on your own. It’s also encouraging as you’re around people who have more money than you but are entrenching a culture of saving in you,” said Lebetso.Lebetso said there were more women in his stokvels than men, which seemed to indicate that women are better managers of money than men.Esau Maota, a pensioner from Diepkloof in Soweto, has been a member of a burial society for more than 20 years. “This type of stokvel brings communities closer because it involves neighbours helping the families around them.“It is also an affordable method to save for those enforceable problems.”His burial society has monthly contributions of R250 ($30), with R200 ($24) going to a bank account and R50 ($6) going to the host of the gathering.It pays out R7 000 ($841) for the burial of a member and R3 500 ($420) to their dependents.Nkgadima said: “Stokvels continue to pervade all levels of society and they are here to stay.”
If early stage companies are supposed to change the world, then Crowdflower and Samasource are model organizations. This morning the two are launching the Give Work iPhone application, a tool that empowers users to increase training and jobs for Kenyan refugees. Rather than playing games or winning badges from location-based services, iPhone users can spend their free time helping others. The joint iPhone application asks users to verify remote work deliverables in order to speed payment to those in need. ReadWriteWeb covered Samasource in early September at the Facebook Fund Rev event. The nonprofit organization demoed a Facebook App that allows application developers to outsource their quality testing to at-risk individuals in countries like Kenya, Cameroon and Ghana. Meanwhile, CrowdFlower is best known as a cloud-based work platform where companies offer Mechanical Turk-style jobs to online laborers. The company launched at this year’s TechCrunch 50 event and describes itself as a “labor as a service” provider. The shared iPhone project is CrowdFlower’s first service involving at-risk communities. The project will allow iPhone app users to work with Samasource’s refugee work program in Dadaab, Kenya. After Kenyan workers complete a simple task such as checking pictures for copyrights, an iPhone user then double checks the worker’s accuracy. By using the application during your daily train or bus commute, you can help improve the lives of numerous workers by endorsing the quality of their work, elevating their career status and speeding the delivery of daily wages. Says Samasource’s Leila Chirayath Janah, “Working with CrowdFlower and iPhone users, the refugees we train in Kenya develop portable work skills and receive higher wages. By training women, youth and refugees to complete paying remote tasks, we give them the ability to build livelihoods and become part of the digital economy.”To check out the application, download it from the App Store. Tags:#start#startups Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting dana oshiro A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Related Posts 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic…
A housing development proposed in 2004 to accommodate University of California at Davis faculty and students broke ground this week on what could eventually be the nation’s largest net-zero-energy (or maybe near-zero-energy) residential projects.Once completed, the $280 million community, called West Village, will house about 4,350 residents. The first phase of the two-phase, 205-acre project focuses on a 130-acre site that will include 600 student rental units, 475 single-family homes, about 45,000 sq. ft. of retail space, and a community college.The development team – West Village Community Partnership, a collaboration between Carmel Partners, based in San Francisco, and Urban Villages, based in Denver – is tackling the village square and student units first. The student housing is expected to be ready for occupancy in the fall of 2011.The single-family homes will be sold at slightly below market rate, which in the current market would mean a starting price of about $400,000. UC says there already is abundant interest in the houses, which will incorporate passive energy-efficient design and renewable energy features. A lottery will be used to determine who among faculty and staff will be eligible to buy the homes.Reaching high for high energy efficiencyIn terms of its operation, though, the broad vision for the community, located just west of the UC Davis campus, is to make it net zero energy. The California Energy Commission helped get the ball rolling in that direction on Monday with a $1,994,322 grant, made through the commission’s Public Interest Energy Research Program, that is intended to help the university analyze and design energy-saving and renewable technologies for the project, as well as a smart grid that will integrate them.“We’re trying to figure out what is feasible,” Nolan Zail, principal partner with the West Village Community Partnership, told the Sacramento Bee.“We’re going to become a living laboratory,” added Sid England, UC Davis assistant vice chancellor for environmental stewardship and sustainability.If, as the Bee points out, residents waste electrical power and water resources, the community will be hard pressed to meet the net zero goal.Because the project is so large-scale, though, all kinds of energy-conserving and resource-wasting behaviors are expected to factor into the data that state officials will collect on West Village’s performance. It indeed will be a living laboratory, and it should help considerably in the development of long-term plans to cut building energy use elsewhere in California.
Here’s a simple script that equals huge timesavings – paste multiple keyframes in Adobe After Effects.One way to be more efficient in After Effects is to become a keyframe wiz. Being adept at keyframing means a faster workflow and more dynamic projects. However, despite the powerful keyframe features in After Effects, some functionality still falls a bit short. The After Effects wizzes at AEScripts.com have created a really handy script to address one such function, copying and pasting multiple keyframes.The really awesome thing about this AE script is that you can copy and keyframe on multiple layers.There’s a multitude of uses for this simple After Effects script to speed up your video editing or motion design work. Very handy for duplicating the motion of several elements onto several NEW elements (images, graphics, etc). See the video below to see it in action.Maybe Adobe will catch wind and include this functionality in future AE versions. Until then, give this script a spin….you may catch yourself wondering what you ever did without it.“Name your own price” and download the Paste Multiple Keyframes script from AEScripts.comFor AE keyframing tips see our previous post: 5 After Effects Keyframe Tips
Under pressure from the sports fraternity and the political class, the Delhi University on Friday decided to promote India Under-19 cricket team captain Unmukt Chand to the second year of his BA course.Unmukt, the star performer of the junior team that won the World Cup earlier this month, had been barred from writing his exam by St Stephen’s College because he didn’t have enough attendance. The college refused to consider Unmukt as a special case citing university rules and denied him entry into the second year of his course.The decision was heavily criticised by people and fans across the board, including India senior team captain MS Dhoni, Union Sports Minister Ajay Maken and Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal.Both Congress leaders spoke to the college principal and senior DU officials after which the university decided to relax its rules.DU vice-chacellor Dinesh Singh said: “Unmukt can continue his course. He will move to the second year.”Unmukt captained the Indian colts to a title triumph at the ICC Under-19 World Cup in Australia earlier this month. In fact, he hit a crucial century in the final against the hosts.
Dr. Tufton, who was delivering the keynote address at the 2018 Caribbean Wellness Day Symposium, held at the Spanish Court Hotel in New Kingston on September 14, said it should be a part of the duties of human resource (HR) managers to lead and encourage physical activities among the workforce. Story Highlights Minister of Health, Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton, says workplaces should establish wellness programmes to minimise downtime and to increase productivity.Dr. Tufton, who was delivering the keynote address at the 2018 Caribbean Wellness Day Symposium, held at the Spanish Court Hotel in New Kingston on September 14, said it should be a part of the duties of human resource (HR) managers to lead and encourage physical activities among the workforce.“Creative HR managers can decide that they are going to provide some options, such as once a year you do a hike up to the Blue Mountains,” he said, adding that this allows for work teams to get together and promotes good relationships at the workplace.The Minister emphasised that in doing physical activities, workers will maintain good health and develop a good habit.Dr. Tufton said that with most of the preventable illnesses causing persons to be away from work, a deliberate approach should be taken for wellness to be on top of the list of priorities at workplaces.He told the audience that the Ministry will assist entities to develop their wellness programmes, and encouraged them to begin small with exercise competitions.The Minister also used the occasion to launch the Workplace Nutrition Challenge, to run from October 2018 to June 2019, under the theme ‘Jamaica Moves Towards Healthy Eating’, which will incentivise workplaces through the adoption of healthier food options.Caribbean Wellness Day was inaugurated in 2008 as an event to increase awareness about non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in the region, and to mobilise and strengthen public, private, and civil society partnerships to combat the illnesses. Minister of Health, Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton, says workplaces should establish wellness programmes to minimise downtime and to increase productivity.