Role of a stokvel com­mit­tee

Vin­cent Phahlane looks at why it is im­por­tant to have a proper struc­ture to run your so­ci­ety

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IN ANY or­gan­i­sa­tion, struc­ture is needed to main­tain or­der. That is why it is cru­cial for a stokvel to have a com­mit­tee. One of the rea­sons why your stokvel should have a com­mit­tee is for your mem­bers to have knowl­edge of what is be­ing done in your stokvel. The mem­bers must elect a com­mit­tee, in that way; they know who to trust in terms of run­ning the or­gan­i­sa­tion.

UN­DER­STAND­ING A COM­MIT­TEE

Mem­bers must un­der­stand and ac­cept the role of a stokvel com­mit­tee. The for­ma­tion of a com­mit­tee is to man­age all that must be done in the stokvel.

The stokvel com­mit­tee must con­sist of dif­fer­ent po­si­tions to give each mem­ber an op­por­tu­nity to par­tic­i­pate in the run­ning of the or­gan­i­sa­tion.

Kgomotso Se­dumedi, a mem­ber of Bo­ma­lavies Stokvel, says she be­lieves ev­ery mem­ber in a stokvel must play a role within the stokvel.

She ex­plains that a stokvel that doesn’t have a com­mit­tee might be at risk of not suc­ceed­ing.

“Bo­ma­lavies Stokvel has em­pow­ered me with money skills so that I can save money and man­age my fi­nances well. An ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee that com­prises of a chair­per­son, sec­re­tary, and a trea­surer helps to en­sure the smooth run­ning of a stokvel,” she ex­plains.

THE NEED FOR A COM­MIT­TEE

It’s im­por­tant to have a com­mit­tee, where mem­bers are able to share their ideas, and voice out their opin­ions.

“Mem­bers ap­point the com­mit­tee, and they must make sure those who are ap­pointed can be trusted and are re­spon­si­ble. The chair­per­son of the stokvel must not make de­ci­sions alone, but in­volve the mem­bers,” says Kgomotso.

In a stokvel, a com­mit­tee must also have a con­sti­tu­tion which will

dic­tate the size of con­tri­bu­tions and the rules that gov­ern the stokvel.

WHO IS RE­SPON­SI­BLE IN THE COM­MIT­TEE

Kgomotso says there are cer­tain re­spon­si­bil­i­ties which mem­bers of the com­mit­tee must take.

“In our stokvel, we have a chair­per­son, sec­re­tary, and a trea­surer.”

Kgomotso ex­plains that the re­spon­si­bil­i­ties of some of the roles in their stokvel.

“A chair­per­son is re­spon­si­ble to lead the agenda of meet­ings, en­sur­ing the rules are fol­lowed, and ex­plore op­por­tu­ni­ties for en­hanc­ing the stokvel’s prac­tices.”

She ex­plains that the sec­re­tary is re­spon­si­ble for keep­ing records for the stokvel, and main­tain­ing com­mu­ni­ca­tion with the mem­bers to en­sure that they are well-in­formed of all ac­tiv­i­ties of the stokvel.

“We also have a trea­surer who is re­spon­si­ble for all the stokvel’s fi­nances. A trea­surer must make sure the money is col­lected, and de­posited into the stokvel’s bank ac­count,” says Kgomotso.

COM­MIT­TEE ROLES ■ CHAIR­PER­SON

A chair­per­son in a stokvel builds a sense of team work, and also com­pletes tasks as­signed to the stokvel group. A chair­per­son should also make ar­range­ments for meet­ings, and no­ti­fies mem­bers with dates, time and where the meet­ing is go­ing to be held.

Be­ing a com­mit­tee chair is a very im­por­tant role. It might be an in­ter­est­ing ac­tiv­ity and at times will be chal­leng­ing. A chair­per­son’s role is to en­sure that the busi­ness which comes to your com­mit­tee is dealt with ap­pro­pri­ately, and that the com­mit­tee reaches an agree­ment, so en­abling the stokvel to move on through the com­mit­tee struc­ture. It is es­sen­tial that you are fa­mil­iar with your com­mit­tee’s terms of ref­er­ence so that you are aware of what de­ci­sions your com­mit­tee is au­tho­rised to make. You also need to be aware of the re­port­ing lines of your com­mit­tee.

■ A TREA­SURER

As a trea­surer, your duty is to make sure that fi­nan­cial ad­min­is­tra­tion of the stokvel is well or­gan­ised.

A trea­surer has the day by day re­spon­si­bil­ity for look­ing after the stokvel money. How­ever, as a whole stokvel mem­bers are re­spon­si­ble for de­cid­ing how funds will be raised and spent.

A trea­sure’s job is to keep ac­counts, and re­ports to the com­mit­tee. A trea­surer should keep a clear record ev­ery time they re­ceive or pay out money. They must not rely on me­mory to write it up later.

Clear records will help them to keep track of money. Also they must make sure that they have pa­per­work for any money which they take in or pay out.

This ap­plies to cheques, bank trans­fers and cash.

■ A SEC­RE­TARY

The role of a sec­re­tary is to sup­port the chair­per­son, in en­sur­ing the smooth func­tion­ing of the stokvel man­age­ment. The sec­re­tary is re­spon­si­ble for en­sur­ing meet­ings are ef­fec­tively or­gan­ised, and be­ing held ac­cord­ing to time.

The sec­re­tary’s job is also to keep files ac­cord­ingly.

Make sure those who are ap­pointed can be trusted

Hav­ing a stokvel com­mit­tee helps to en­sure that the or­gan­i­sa­tion runs smoothly as ev­ery­one knows their role

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