KCB has signed an agreement with the Kenya National Federation of Jua Kali Associations (KNFJKA) to accelerate the provision of affordable credit and capacity building to the members of the umbrella body.

The deal provides a collaboration framework that will see KCB Bank and the KCB Foundation support interventions. These interventions will aim to strengthen participation, collaboration, cooperation, and synergy within the Jua Kali sector.

The initiative will support Jua Kali Association members from Carpentry, Woodcrafts, Metalworks, Soapstone crafts, Leather production, Textile products, Clay/Poetry crafts, Beekeeping Mechanical Engineering, Food processing and Electrical sub-sectors. They will get access to a range of financial and non-financial services offered by the bank to spur their growth.

Speaking during the MoU signing ceremony, KCB Bank Director of Digital Financial Services, Ms. Angela Mwirigi noted that it is high time the Jua Kali sector received a new lease of life through the injection of the much-needed market-driven competencies as a first step towards revolutionizing the sector.

“The engagement we are unveiling today is a response to the urgent need for players within the Jua Kali sub-sector to tap into more formal entrepreneurial opportunities currently available with a goal to progress towards decent work for all. KCB Bank Kenya and KCB Foundation will work closely to ensure that your members are well positioned within the skills development eco-system both locally and regionally,” Ms. Angela said.

Despite the Jua Kali sector’s prolific contribution to the economy, the sector is still plagued by systemic challenges that prevent the achievement of its full potential. These challenges include; Lack of adequate market for their wares, access to relevant social protection services like pension, insurance, lack of infrastructure, recognition of learnings and skills upgrading framework among others.

On his part, the CEO of the Kenya National Federation of Jua Kali Associations, Mr. Richard Muteti lauded KCB’s move as it will go a long way in unlocking the full potential of the informal sector.

“As sector players, we welcome KCB Bank and KCB Foundation on board this as through their respective interventions, we shall get the capacity to focus and upscale our entrepreneurial endeavors. As a result, we look forward to reaping the full benefits of a robust SME sector that guarantees sustained growth,” Mr. Muteti said.