Significant Role of Kenyan Diaspora SACCOs

Savings and Credit Cooperatives (SACCOs) play a critical financial inclusion role for Kenyan citizens at home and abroad. And if the latest statistics by KUSCCO are anything to go by, then there are at least 22,000 SACCOs operating and serving 14 million members in Kenya. More so, latest Economic Survey statistics indicate that net savings in these locally operated SACCOs rose to Sh17.5 billion in 2021. Hence, the benefits of SACCOs in Kenya can never be understated. 

Now, for the first time, remittances to Kenya from the Diaspora have surpassed the traditional tourism and agricultural sectors. With this comes the question about the role of SACCOs for Kenyans living in the Diaspora. Indeed, as more Kenyans seek greener pastures abroad, they may want to continue their saving culture and tap into the cheap financial facilities by SACCOs. 

In the last decade, there has been a steady rise in the establishment of Kenya Diaspora SACCOs. The SACCOs seek to solve the difficulties most Kenyans abroad face when dealing with friends and relatives they entrust to oversee their investment projects back home and often fail to deliver. Likewise, the SACCOs provide a convenient alternative to banks that impose stringent requirements for accessing loans and mortgages. 

Then, in this quick guide, we list the seven leading Kenya Diaspora SACCOs bridging the gap for affordable financial solutions for Kenyans abroad. Check them out below: –

The Kenya Diaspora SACCOs

Stoke UK Diaspora SACCO – UK

Best For: Kenyans in the diaspora who often relocate from one country to another abroad. 

Overview

Stoke UK Diaspora SACCO is a UK-based, member-owned SACCO serving Kenyans in the diaspora or any Diaspora returnee. Registered in 2017, the SACCO has members in Europe, Australia, Canada, the USA, the Middle East, and Kenya. It collaborates with Cooperative Bank and KCB Bank to offer its members lucrative savings, credit, and investment opportunities. In December 2020, the SACCO launched a 10-year strategic plan to grow its membership and capitalization.

The Services

  • Savings Products: Main Saving, Fixed Deposit, Children’s Account, Holiday Savings Account
  • Loan Products: Personal Loan, Development Loan, Emergency/Instant Loan, Top-Up Loan
  • Investment Products: Land Properties, Housing Properties

The Modes of Depositing Savings

  • M-Pesa
  • World Remit
  • TapTap Send
  • Local Bank RTGS

The Eligibility Criteria

  • Be a Kenyan aged at least 18 years and in gainful employment
  • Be of sound mind and moral character
  • Pay Kshs. 10,000 registration fee
  • Buy at least ten shares valued at Kshs. 100,000
  • Make at least Kshs. 10,000 monthly savings deposits 

What We Like:

  • Members access loans equivalent to up to 80% of savings and shares
  • Members can use their savings, shares, deposits, shares, and deposits of guarantor(s), a title deed, or debenture on stock  or securities as admissible securities for loans
  • Member-only investment opportunities and discounts
  • Three account signatories guarantee integral SACCO operations
  • The SACCO is regulated by SACCO Societies Regulatory Authority (SASRA)

Kenya North America Diaspora SACCO (K-NADS) – USA

Best For:  Kenyan women in North American countries wishing to take substantial loan products or investments.

Overview

K-NADS is a Kenyan Diaspora SACCO based in the USA. It was founded in 2016 by a group of women who wanted to empower fellow Kenyan women abroad. In turn, the SACCO provides easy and affordable access to credit, convenient savings products, and versatile investment opportunities. More so, K-NADS has more than 1,000 members scattered in 23 North American countries. Likewise, the SACCO has a local Kenyan office in Muthaiga, Nairobi.

The Services

  • Savings Products: Main Savings, Demand Savings, Fixed Deposits, Children’s Account, Holiday Savings Account, Travel Savings
  • Loan Products: Consolidated Loan, Construction Loan, Development Loan, Emergency Loan, Land/Plot Loan, Medical Cover Loan, Motor Vehicle Loan, No Question Asked Loan, Relocation Loan, School Fees Loan
  • Investment Products: Varies

The Modes of Depositing Savings

  • WAVE
  • M-Pesa
  • World Remit
  • Western Union
  • Money Gram
  • Local Bank RTGS
  • US Bank Wire Transfer

The Eligibility Criteria

  • For Diaspora Residents
  • A Kenyan woman residing in any of the 23 North American countries
  • Be aged at least 18 years and in gainful employment
  • Have a valid Kenyan ID or passport or valid ID or passport of the country of residence in North America
  • Be of sound mind and good moral character
  • Make a one-time payment of Kshs. 1,233 upon joining towards annual insurance
  • Pay Kshs. 10,000 non-refundable registration fee
  • Make an initial deposit of Kshs. 5,000 towards member capital shares
  • Make at least Kshs. 5,000 monthly savings deposits 

 

  • Additional Rules for Diaspora Returnees
  • Provide proof of the previous residence in North America
  • Provide reference and contact person in North America

What We Like:

  • Interest on loan as low as 1% per month on reducing balance
  • Members access loans equivalent to up to 3-4 times their savings and shares
  • Offers members an option to consolidate their loans to ease the debt burden
  • Eligible securities for loans include shares and deposits of a member and those for a guarantor(s)
  • An investment committee identifies well-researched investment products for members

Kenya USA Diaspora SACCO – USA

Best For: Digitized USA Diaspora SACCO services

Overview

If you are a Kenyan male residing in the diaspora and searching for a Kenyan Diaspora SACCO that accepts both men and women members, consider joining Kenya USA Diaspora SACCO. Unlike most Kenya Diaspora SACCOs, this is the first e-SACCO serving the Kenyans residing anywhere in the US. Hence, the SACCO offers savings, credit, and investment opportunities with notable benefits like lucrative returns on savings and term deposits with cashing out options after 3, 6, or 12 months. 

The Services

  • Savings Products: Main Saving, Mavuno Term Deposit
  • Loan Products: Normal Loan, Normal Special Loan, Emergency Loan, Development Loan, Loyalty Loan
  • Investment Products: Mavuno Term Deposits, Own Property, Group Investments, Fadhili Homes, Isinya-Konza Plots

The Modes of Depositing Savings

  • PESA Direct for online deposits
  • WAVE
  • PoaPay
  • M-Pesa
  • Western Union
  • Money Gram
  • Local Bank RTGS
  • US Bank Wire Transfer

The Eligibility Criteria

  • Be a Kenyan aged at least 18 years and in gainful employment
  • Possess a valid Kenyan national ID or passport
  • Provide a colored passport-size photograph
  • Details for a designated next of kin
  • Pay Kshs. 10,000 non-refundable registration fee
  • Make at least Kshs. 10,000 monthly contributions towards savings
  • Buy 20 shares valued at Kshs. 20,000 within six months of joining

What We Like:

  •  Up to 10% interest on fixed deposits
  • Interest on loans as low as 1% per month on reducing balance
  • Cheap and accessible loans of up to 4 times the member savings and shares
  • No need to be in gainful employment 
  • Purchases well-priced and legit property investments back home

Kenya Qatar Diaspora SACCO – Qatar

Best For: Kenyans in the Middle East

Overview

Kenya Qatar Diaspora SACCO is a Nairobi-based SACCO serving Kenyans in Qatar. Established in 2014, the SACCO offers affordable and convenient savings, credit, and investment products to Kenyan Diaspora in Qatar or Diaspora returnees to Qatar. Here, the SACCO gives its members access to LPO financing, a benevolent scheme, and even job opportunities in Qatar. 

The Services

  • Savings Products: Member Deposits, Fixed Term Deposits
  • Loan Products: Personal Loan, Emergency Loan, School Fees Loan, Mjengo Loan, Medical Loan, Asset & LPO Financing
  • Investment Products: Land Properties, Housing Properties

The Modes of Depositing Savings

  • M-Pesa
  • Local Bank RTGS

The Eligibility Criteria

  • A Kenyan citizen residing or returning to Qatar and in gainful employment
  • Be at least 18 years old and of sound mind and good character
  • Pay Kshs. 2,500 non-refundable registration fee
  • Deposit at least Kshs. 1,400 or up to Kshs. 10,000 towards share capital
  • Attach a passport-sized photograph and a copy of Kenyan national ID or passport

What We Like:

  • Members can access the services without a bank account
  • As low as 1% interest on loans
  • Also accepts Kenyans residing anywhere in the world as long as they once lived or worked in Qatar

Kenya Germany Diaspora SACCO – Germany 

Best For: Investing in lucrative land projects in Kenya

Overview

Kenya Germany Diaspora SACCO is a Kenyan Diaspora SACCO targeting Kenyans in Germany and its neighboring countries. The SACCO mobilizes savings and access to affordable loans. Plus, it partners with select commercial banks in Kenya to present its members with well-researched investment opportunities back home. The partner banks include Equity Bank, Cooperative Bank, Family Bank, KCB Bank, and I & M Bank. Besides, the SACCO is SASRA-compliant, assuring its members of its authentic operations. 

The Services:

  • Savings Products: Main Saving
  • Loan Products: Personal Loan, Development Loan, Emergency Loan, Instant Loan
  • Investment Products: Real Estate, Shares & Stocks, Treasury Bills & Bonds

The Modes of Depositing Savings

  • M-Pesa
  • Local Bank RTGS

The Eligibility Criteria

  • A Kenyan citizen residing or returning to Germany or its neighboring countries
  • Be in gainful employment
  • Be at least 18 years old and of sound mind and good character
  • Pay Kshs. 5,000 non-refundable registration fee
  • Make Kshs. 5,000 or equivalent monthly contributions
  • Own at least 50 shares valued at Kshs. 50,000

What We Like:

  • The SACCO is regulated by SACCO Societies Regulatory Authority (SASRA)
  • Focuses on well-research land investments in Kenya
  • Conducts regular education and training sessions for its members
  • Issues loans equivalent to three times the shares and savings

AWE Diaspora SACCO – Europe

Best For: Kenyan entrepreneurs in Europe

Overview

African Women in Europe Diaspora Saving and Credit Co-Operative Society Ltd (AWEDS) is a new Kenyan Diaspora SACCO targeting Kenyan men and women in Europe. After its establishment in October 2020, the SACCO held its first AGM in June 2021. And even though it is yet to offer any investment products, its savings and credit services are affordable and convenient for Kenyans in the Diaspora with ongoing projects back home. 

The Services

  • Savings Products: Main Saving, Fixed Deposit, Call Deposit, Junior Savings, Holiday Savings, Chama Savings
  • Loan Products: Asset Finance, Working Capital, Insurance Premium Financing, Home Improvement Loan, Holiday Loan, Land/Plot Purchase Loan, Construction Loan
  • Investment Products: None

The Modes of Depositing Savings

  • TapTap Send
  • Local Bank RTGS
  • M-Pesa

The Eligibility Criteria

  • Be at least 18 years and of sound mind and good character
  • Be a member of AWE
  • Be a Kenyan residing in Europe and in gainful employment or business
  • A Kenyan who was once residing in Europe and engaged in business  for not less than a year before returning to Kenya
  • Deposit share capital Kshs. 5,000 and another Kshs. 20,000 non-refundable registration fee

What We Like:

  • Offers affordable loans of as little as 1% interest on reducing balance
  • Competitive interest on savings of up to 8%
  • Members may take loans equivalent to three times their savings
  • Services accessible anywhere via mobile app
  • The SACCO is regulated by SACCO Societies Regulatory Authority (SASRA)

Kenya Australia Diaspora Investment Cooperative Society (KADI SACCO) – Australia

Best For: Kenyans residing anywhere outside the country (Australia and beyond)

Overview

KADI SACCO is an Australia-based Kenyan Diaspora SACCO targeting Kenyans residing anywhere outside Kenya. Unlike most Kenyan Diaspora SACCOs, this SASRA-compliant SACCO accepts new members regardless of their employment status. 

The Services:

  • Savings Products: Main Saving
  • Loan Products: Maendeleo Loan, Elimu Loan, Emergency Loan
  • Investment Products: Land Properties, Government Securities, Member-approved Investments

The Modes of Depositing Savings

  • TransferWise
  • World Remit
  • M-Pesa
  • Local Bank RTGS

The Eligibility Criteria

  • Be a Kenyan citizen residing outside Kenya
  • Be of sound mind and moral character
  • Pay Kshs. 5,000 one-off non-refundable registration fee
  • Buy at least 20 shares valued at Kshs. 20,000 within six months of joining
  • Make at least Kshs. 5,000 monthly contributions

What We Like:

  • Diversifies its investments into any other product approved by the members
  • The SACCO is regulated by SACCO Societies Regulatory Authority (SASRA)
  • Accepts Kenyans residing anywhere around the globe

Kenyan Diaspora SACCOs FAQs

  • Why should I join a Kenya Diaspora SACCO when residing abroad?

SACCOs are an affordable alternative to financial services offered by mainstream banks. Through them, members access low-interest loans and earn interest on their savings, lowering the overall cost of borrowing. A Kenyan Diaspora SACCO meets the financial needs of Kenyans living abroad. For example, they have simplified financial requirements that are easy to meet before accessing the low-interest loan facilities. Likewise, they give Kenyans in the Diaspora more control and accountability for the remittances they send back home. 

  • Can I join more than one Kenya Diaspora SACCO?

Yes. Still, the two or more Kenya Diaspora SACCOs should have no conflict of interest.

  • Can I continue my membership in a Kenyan Diaspora SACCO after relocating to another country?

Yes. Only, ensure you stay up-to-date with your monthly contributions and loan repayments. 

  • Who regulates Kenya Diaspora SACCOs?

Most Kenya Diaspora SACCOs abide by the Cooperative Society Act and their SACCO bylaws. Other SACCOs also become members of SASRA for accountability purposes. 

  • What is the procedure for joining a Kenyan Diaspora SACCO?

  1. Go to the SACCO’s official website and fill out the registration form 
  2. Provide a copy of your Kenyan ID or valid Kenyan passport
  3. Attach your colored passport photograph
  4. Pay the non-refundable registration fee
  5. Activate your SACCO account by purchasing the minimum shares within six months of joining
  6. Maintain monthly savings to increase your eligible loan amount
  • What are the benefits of saving or borrowing from a SACCO instead of the traditional banking institutions?

SACCOs have a competitive advantage over mainstream banks as follows: –

    • They offer lower interest rates that remain steady regardless of financial market fluctuations
    • SACCO members earn interest on their savings and get dividends subject to the annual performance of the SACCO
  • The consistent monthly savings demanded by SACCOs help Kenyans in the diaspora to build a saving discipline to accumulate a substantial savings base

Conclusion

If you are a Kenyan in the Diaspora, consider joining a Kenyan Diaspora SACCO operating in your resident country. The SACCO will give you access to affordable credit, interest-earning savings products, and investment opportunities with significant returns. Indeed, the SACCOs are an excellent way of saving and investing back home without relying on friends and family members with no prior professional qualification or experience.

Continue shopping

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *