SACCOS are voluntary associations where by members regularly pool their savings, and subsequently members may obtain loans which they may use for different purposes. Generally, the idea behind establishment of SACCOS is to promote savings and make credits available to the members. SACCOS are the important microfinancing institutions for mobilization of financial resources for various development activities, particularly in rural areas; where majority of both Kenya and Tanzania reside, and earn their livelihood from agriculture.
In Africa, the idea of saving and credit societies was first described and discussed in 1955 in Jipara, a small town the upper west town of Ghana, the idea was brought by the Roman Catholic priest, Father John McNulty from Ireland. He decided to assist his village to form a saving and co-operative, he then trained 60 people mainly teachers. The success Jipara story has been widely replicated throughout the African continent.
Delegates from Kenya Credit Unions have been visiting the UK movement for some time now and to Rochdale home of the Co-Operative. Credit union in the UK have welcomed them over the years. Metro Moneywise, Voyager Alliance and South Manchester
There are 5,769 credit unions in Kenya, serving 5.4 million members, which is more than one fifth of the population and they have assets worth more than £4.3 billion