By Nadesh E
“Businesses have finances just like human beings have blood. When there is no blood in the human person. S/he does not survive for long, same thing with business organizations. When there is no finance and proper management, you can’t go anywhere.” Ekuh, Edmond Mbong
At a glance, this reporter notices a hall full with over 30 youths sitting with notebooks, files containing documents, pens and paying so much attention.
A second look confirms their attention is on one person who is writing on the board and explaining at the top of his voice.
The cardboard papers on the wall read, “Workshop on Financial Management for Non-profit Organizations and Social Entrepreneurs, sponsored by CCREAD.”
The training Friday August 28 to 29, 2020 at the Centre for Community Regeneration and Development- CCREAD, was for senior managers (non-finance staff like Directors and CEOs), Financial Staff and program managers of Small to Medium-sized NGOs from the South West Region.
And when the reporter approached the trainer during a coffee break, the founder of the Gateway (a social innovation hub), Ekuh Edmond Mbong says the goal of the workshop is to equip nonprofit staff and managers with financial management skills while strengthening best practices and accountability to promote continuity and security of financial resources for their organizations.
Mr Ekuh said, most development organisations are over-dependent on grants and donations which might fail at some point. So, they have to have a system in place that tells them how they make and manage money and how the money can be multiplied in terms of impact or return on investment. “…The training is to help them build credibility and accountability to gain the trust of the people they are supporting and those who have the vision and attract funders. Hence, proper financial management is to an organization as blood purification is to a human being…” He added.
Participants at the training say they are open to new skills and learning, their reason for attendance. The project coordinator for City of Transformation Foundation (an environmental conservation NGO), Ndum Stanisla believes the training will enhance the growth of his organization. “My being here is for the restructuring and the emancipation of our staff… Implementation of what I learn here will be at a very fast rate” he said.
Also, Masango Emmanuel, a staff of CCREAD who initially thought financial management was only for those with a Mathematics background encouraged others who haven’t learnt about it to do so. He says he has been equipped by the training to do bookkeeping, proper accountability in managing an organization’s finance.
The founder of CCREAD, Hilary Ngide, has encouraged other organisations to send their staff for training at the centre, so that together they can steer development in Cameroon.