I was recently talking to my young brother and I was surprised and impressed in equal measure that he has been saving for the education of his children. You must be wondering why this is surprising since that’s what every right thinking human being must do. Well, not only does he not have children as yet, he is neither married nor dating. More interestingly, he has set aside money for children he is yet to have for the last four years or so. Is that not impressive?
I was intrigued by what could have been his motivation. Well, his explanation was simple. He has been watching as people around him struggle when it’s time to pay tuition and he does not wish to go through the same stress. Valid point. As if that is not enough, he tells me that he intends to continue saving even after he has had children because he wants their future to be guaranteed in the likely event that he passes away. An even more valid point.
This got me thinking. Why have I never done something like this? We are always lamenting that we don’t earn enough, that we almost live hand to mouth but we do not hesitate to buy a handbag that costs Rfw50, 000. We don’t have the same complaints when we go out and spend that same amount on dinner and drinks. Not a month passes without contributing to a wedding or three, sometimes of people who aren’t really our friends or family.
I have particularly looked at Bank of Kigali’s ‘Kira Kibondo’ which is a long term savings scheme that caters for children between 0 to 16 years. Kwezi is only four years old, so if I started now, I would be so far by the time she turns 16. The beauty of this account is that it has no monthly account charges, bonus interest is paid when no withdrawals are made at eight per cent per annum and you can deposit as little as Rfw10,000.
Saving of any nature is a matter of discipline and most importantly; commitment. There is need to scrutinise my expenses and the likelihood of succeeding at this is worth trying. The speed at which tuition is going up and up is worrying and it is now time to look into a new strategy.
The possibilities that come with committing to saving for Kwezi in particular excite me and I am seriously looking into it.