After a month of calling for entries, the National Social Security Fund (NSSF) has received over 400 submissions for consideration in this year’s Friends with Benefits TV show which will see three winning contestants walk away with a total of Shs 55million cash prize to further improve their lives.
The NSSF “Friends with benefits” campaign, now in its third year, is a TV show designed to encourage a savings culture in Uganda as well impart financial literacy among savers, by showcasing stories of NSSF beneficiaries who received their savings and did something lie changing.
The show profiles former NSSF members who received and invested or used their NSSF benefits to improve their lives, those of their families and even the communities they live in.
“We have received 447 entries from NSSF members who have put to good use their retirement benefits received from the Fund. From these entries, we shall go through a vigorous verification process and shortlist 16 inspiring stories that will then feature on the TV show.” said Barbra Arimi, NSSF’s Head of Marketing &Communications.
“This year’s submissions include success stories ranging from investments in agriculture, hospitality, tours and travel, business, tourism, real estate, education among others. These stories we believe will inspire millions of Ugandans who are either saving with NSSF or are yet to start saving with NSSF to register with the Fund in order to ensure a better life. “Arimi added.
According to the current figures from NSSF, there has been a 29% increase in the amount of money paid in benefits to qualifying members from UGX 278 billion in 2017 to UGX 360 billion in 2018. The number of beneficiaries also increased from 19,027 to 23,665.
The stories submitted touched most of the benefits the Fund offers which are; the Age benefit given to a member who has reached 55 years; Survivors Benefit, Withdrawal Benefit, Invalidity Benefit, Exempted Employment paid to members that join employment categories that are exempted from NSSF contributions; and Emigration Grant paid to a contributing member who has been working in Uganda and is leaving the country permanently.
Responding on the criteria used to pick the stories, Arimi said, “We chose stories that are inspirational, stories that stand out in terms of creativity, and have changed lives of the beneficiaries. We also considered stories that have financial viability and have sustained or are able to sustain the member throughout the period of retirement.”
The Friends with Benefits TV show will start airing in October2019. Winners will be selected through voting by the public and an expert panel of judges.