As many N.G.O.’s and C.B.O.’s struggle for financial viability to fund and sustain its programmes it did not stop some from attending financial skills training.
S.U.N.G.O. under the auspice of the S.I.C.T.P. held its Basic Financial Management System training for C.S.O.’s at its premises at Vaitele.
S.U.N.G.O. has many C.B.O. members who have a training need in practical accounting – this has been identified through the T.N.A. which S.U.N.G.O. carried out for its members for this financial year.
Managing money and accounting for it is a key skill. If an organisation does this well it gives the organisation a firm foundation to work from. Many C.B.O.’s do not keep sound accounting records. Now many have access to computers through members and family. Many C.B.O. members now have some computer skills. This course is a very practical course on Using Excel for Accounting.
The purpose of this training course was first designed and used for N.G.O.’s. The Excel F.M.S. used for the practical accounting was developed by the Technical Advisor for S.U.N.G.O. who has used it widely throughout the Pacific.
This system, and the manual that goes with it, is made freely available to any Not-for-Profit organisation. While it has been specifically designed to use several integrated Excel database features, such as summary pivot tables, the system works as a simple single entry accounting package. By the end of the programme, participants were competent in the following areas:
• Basic excel skills needed for cashbook
• The F.M.S. template – the purpose of each worksheet
• Data entry into the F.M.S. – data entry skills
• Bank reconciliations
• Using pivot tables for summarising and financial reporting
• Preparing and analysing a financial report
• Protecting and backing up the F.M.S. file
Many of the N.G.O.’s have successfully used this system over the past 5 years. S.U.N.G.O. felt it is time to start making this system and the training available to C.B.O.’s.
There were 16 participants from various N.G.O.’s and C.B.O.’s from around Samoa who participated in the training. The trainers for the week long course were Siaosi Salesulu and Faapito Opetaia of S.U.N.G.O.