|It Did Not Happen Overnight: The History of Group-Based Credit Programmes in Kenya (K-REP, 1996, 54 p.)|
|CHAPTER 4. OUTREACH AND PROMOTION|
The evidence from this experience shows that clients reached by NCCK through the church received an inconsistent message. Furthermore, the information passed by the church created inaccurate expectations in potential clients. More importantly, NCCK-Kisumu and NCCK-Kakamega were unable to reach the clients who were not members of their churches.
The message passed by the church was incomplete and sometimes in direct conflict with the objectives and procedures of the scheme.
Because NCCK relied on the church, the local administration in its Kakamega branch were unaware of the programme and this led to arrest of two of its programme staff.
Other experiences show that the village elders used by Action Aid hijacked the programme; as they only recruited close family members and friends. This later had an adverse effect on loan repayment because the groups lacked vision, commitment, and purpose. Furthermore, the village elders turned out to be active in partisan party politics and hence influenced group activities along the same lines.
In Kisii, clients came to associate the funds with welfare or handouts from the church, thereby undermining their commitment to repay the loans. Meanwhile, Juhudi-Eldoret suffered from being associated with the government, arising from the use of barazas for outreach and promotion. Other notable experiences of the branch is that outreach and promotion work was delayed as the chiefs from time to time cancelled scheduled meetings at short notice. This perhaps made it difficult for the programme to convince potential clients of its credibility. Furthermore, the focus of the barazas were lost, as the local administration spent most of the time talking politics or administrative issues. This, not surprisingly, reinforced the suspicion by clients that Juhudi-Eldoret and the government had something in common.
Juhudi-Eldorets experience also had some positive sides to it. The initial contact between the programme and local administration before the barazas made it possible for chiefs to understand better the principles and objectives of the programme. They later convinced potential clients about the intentions of the programme.
In Juhudi-Kibera, the local administration overestimated their future role in the scheme as a result of their participation in outreach and promotion. The programme had to resist the temptation by the local administration to recommend clients for loans outside the framework of the scheme. Generally, since barazas are associated with the government, there is the danger that the target audience may be missed because those opposed to the government are reluctant to attend.