Consolidation of Co-op Apex Organisations (1998)

This document has been made available in electronic
format by the International Co-operative Alliance (ICA)
June, 1998
(Source: ICA Regional Office for West Africa -Activity Report for 1996-1997, pp.11-14)

Consolidation of Co-operative Apex Organisations

The objective of this program is to support to the institutional and autonomy of already existing unions and federations, through the retraining and development of their human resources. The final beneficiaries are the individual members, those of elected organs and the employees of co-operatives affiliated to unions and federations.

ACOODER and FECECAM in Benin, URECOS-CI, SCAGBO, DJIBOUA and UCAO in Côte d'Ivoire, UNCAS in Senegal as well as INC in Cape Verde benefited from the ROWA support.

Association Coopérative pour le Développement Rural (ACOODER)
(Association of Co-operatives for Rural Development)

Since 1995, ROWA has supported a three-year human resource development with three components:

The two components of training were achieved in 1995, but the literacy finished in January 1997. The functional literacy programme was carried out by a specialised NGO, DERANA.

Fédération des Caisses d'Epargne et de Crédit Agricole Mutuel du Bénin (FECECAM)
(Federation of Agricultural and Mutual Savings and Credit Banks)
FECECAM's consolidation was supported through the financing of training sessions for staff members at ISPEC (Cotonou). Each beneficiary participated in a separate module, adapted to his level and responsibilities within the FECECAM or in its local bank.

From 24 to 27 April 1997, four officers (a manager, a cashier of two local banks, a male officer in charge of studies and research, and another in charge of training at the headquarters of the Federation) attended the following modules:

Union Régionale des Entreprises Coopératives des Savanes de Côte d'Ivoire - URECOS-CI.
(Regional Union of Savannah Co-operative Enterprises of Côte d'Ivoire) ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Further a request of URECOS-CI, ROWA supported a session of three-day round table which gathered the Union, representatives of Government and development partners. The aims of this meeting were:

53 participants including 31 co-operators attended this meeting.

Société Coopérative Agricole d'Agboville - Union des Coopératives Agricoles d'Oumé - Union des GVC Djiboua de Divo (Côte d'Ivoire)
(Agricultural Co-operative Association of Agboville - Agricultural Co-operative Union of Oumé - Union of Djiboua Co-operative Groups)

These three unions of the coffee/cocoa sector in Côte d'Ivoire and ROWA have agreed on a three-year collaboration (1997-99) for the implementation of a training program to the benefit of administrators and personnel of primary co-operatives which are affiliated to them.

The overall aim of this triennial programme is the development of basic human resources of co-operatives with the view of a professionalised management and a significant improvement of revenues of individual members.

In the course of the year 1997/98, the program allowed the training and retraining of 1460 administrators, 108 accountants, cashiers and storekeepers, from 50 primary co-operatives.

The topics covered were: the organisation and functioning of a co-operative; keeping of accounts documents; the collection and quality control of products.

The institutional aim of this program is the gradual emergence of endogenous units, charged with training and education of its members as well as collaboration between members (membership development and conflict resolution).

Union Nationale des Coopératives Agricoles du Sénégal (UNCAS)
(National Union of Agricultural Co-operatives)
The National Union of Agricultural Co-operatives in Senegal (UNCAS) benefited from two grants meant for training at the Agricultural Co-operative College in Seoul, Korea. These courses which took place from 25 April to 8 May 1997, essentially focused on rural development, farm economy, co-operative management and the role of the state.

In addition to the development of human resources, one of the objectives of these courses was to encourage exchanges between UNCAS and the agricultural co-operative movement in Korea.

Institut National des Coopératives (Cape Verde) (National Institute of Co-operatives)
Upon the request of INC, ROWA supported the training of 15 co-operative organisation inspectors. The purpose of this training was to provide technical and behavioural competencies to local INC co-ordinating technicians so they could become inspectors of co-operative organisations. The session took place in Praia from January 21 to February 8, 1997. The participants attended 120 hour class hours composed of 15 sessions. From this training, a manual of co-operative organisation inspection was drafted for these future inspectors' use.

It is important to note that the role of these inspectors is firstly educational to allow in-house training of co-operative leaders. «The inspection is perceived as a means of general education of co-operators, rather than a method of monitoring good management of affairs and the implementation of fundamental principles of co-operativism,» according to the INC project document.

Practical follow-up sessions were organised after this training.