Saving and Credit Cooperative in Sirsia, Nepal

planning meeting for the cooperative (Sr. Smitha 2009)

In Nepal many developmental programs are implemented through cooperatives. 22.000 cooperatives are registered up to now and the government appreciates their importance for development. So Don Bosco decided to unify all the 28 Self Help Groups into one cooperative to insure sustainability.

The cooperative was set up in August 2009 and registered. The participants decided on the purpose of the cooperative and choose a saving and credit focus. The members elected their representatives to form the executive body of the coop. 35 members from 5 wards were chosen to function as founding members for registration.

At the end of the project in 2015 two cooperatives have been established, together they have almost 1.000 member. To become member, one has to buy a share for 200 Nepali Rupees. Members are entitled to buy up to 30 shares.

Formation workshop

The founding board (Sr. Smitha 2009)
First president Sonodhi Hansda signing her appointment (Sr. Smitha 2009)
Participants of formation workshop (Sr. Smitha 2009)


The CDU (Chief Development Officer) of the district regularly visits the executive body. Every month the transactions are checked and deposited with the National Cooperative Bank.

The executive body comprises of a president, a vice president, secretary, vice secretary and treasurer. As stated in the statutes, always a men and a woman are appointed to the positions president and secretary.

Don Bosco supports the cooperative. Sr. Smitha and F. Jacob are advisers and mentors to the members of the board. Don Bosco also donated the building which hosts the office.

First president of the coop Sonodhi Hansa (Traud-Dubois 2011)

Coop office

The office of the cooperative (Traud-Dubois 2011)
Farmer couple about to deposit their savings at the office (Traud-Dubois 2011)

A former room at the premises of Don Bosco got converted into the office of the cooperative. Here members come to deposit their savings or to ask for a loan. The cooperative pays 9% interest for saving and takes 15% interest for credit. This rate is comparatively low and frees the farmers from the incredible high rates of local money lenders. Within 10 months the loan needs to be refunded.

A highlight for the cooperative in Marshal Nagar was the building and inauguration of a Community Hall of 1600 sq feet and an office for the Cooperative.