Stats & The Hot Potato

I know you are all curious about what we’ve accomplished so far here at Footprint, so in order to pat out the fire of your curiosity here are some of our achievements from our FSB training:


1. Attendees trained: 3010

2. Total number workshops: 108

3. No. of booklets issued: 5000

4. Trainers active: 11

5. Percentage complete: 133%

6. Training time used: 45%

7. Gender Split: M: 42% F: 58%

8. Provinces: 9

So we did it, with some blood, sweat and tears of joy and pain! All in all we achieved all our objectives.

We will soon be posting some interviews with a few of our trainers so you can get a sense of what it was like for them out in the field. There was a lot of great feedback from the learners on the evaluation forms. Click here to read some of the verbatim feedback!

Why do we want to get involved in consumer ed?

There are a lot of different opinions about what is and is not working with regards to consumer’s education. A lot of debate about measuring behavioural changes and monitoring the economic impact of face-to-face interventions. We can get so caught up in these corporate issue, which are valid because those who are signing the cheques want to know the impact is on economic growth! No-one has the answers yet and while the debates in sue we want to be part of the force that is out there, believing that what we are doing makes a difference.

We are fortunate enough to see the “lights go on” in the peoples eyes when they sit in the classrooms. The “gogo” who is delighted because she has found a way to save money for her grandchild’s schooling! The young single mother manages her fears that “the bank will steal her money” now she has learned that “her money can grow in the bank”.

We believe that what is happening on a grass-roots level is important and valuable and will continue to look for clients to partner with, who have a similar philosophy of growing communities.

The Hot Potato!

Our business model is another “hot potato” debate. Our purpose is to provide self- employment opportunities for women across South Africa and skill the people in sound financial literacy skills and later, personal health and wellness skills. Our trainer model is based on a peer-training model. We recruit potential trainers from the communities who bring with them great value in their understanding of the culture and nuances of the community. We train them in the skills of presentation, content knowledge and the basic business acumen that they require to fulfil their training in the field. Over time we aim to mentor them to a place where they will own their own business, when we will continue to source work for them in the training of life-skills and field execution.

The debate continues and people grapple with the idea of the validity of using this peer-model to train such personal issues as finances and health. Market research shows that a large percentage of our target market, seek advice and information on financial matters from friends and family. They need someone who can help bridge the gap between the intimacy of seeking help from people you know, to seeking advice from the professionals. We believe that our peer-trainers play a key role in communicating important life skills within their communities.

During the time our trainers were being up-skilled for out current project, some of them experienced breakthroughs in the understanding of their own personal financial management. They developed a strong connection to the material they were exposed to. This enables them to relate to the experiences and situations of the learners.

The trainers know they cannot give advice, but they can share an understanding with their learners. This is a powerful way to dispel the myths around the very intimidating “banking world” if someone from your community who has often had a similar experience to you, can help you gain the confidence to enter into this world of finance more effectively because they have!

We believe in this model for these reasons and because it allows us the opportunity to upskill people in the communities in a new set of skills and support them through their growth. We want to create a sustainable field-force of people who live and work in their own communities.

So we will continue to debate with our clients as they grapple with the concept of using peer-trainers for consumer education. We welcome any comments or insights. Please send emails to

Posted under Blog - General

This post was written by Sandi on June 9, 2009