The Partner System is a popular saving partnership between a group of people. It is a very common practice in the Caribbean, especially among low-income earners and in other countries where Afro-Caribbean communities may be found.
One individual is entrusted with managing the money and is called “the banker”. The other members – “the partners” – contribute a stipulated amount (called a “hand”) either weekly, fortnightly or on a monthly basis. Every week or month, one member receives the total amount (called the “draw”) contributed by all the partners. In some cases, the banker collects a hand as a service fee. The order in which members get their draw is selected by the banker, who will give priority to the more established and trusted members.
Even though the system has been around for many decades, the attitude towards it is mixed. There are, however, a few positive lessons to be learned.
Here are 5 things the Jamaican Partner Draw teaches you:
- Patience – A Partner scheme may last a few weeks, up to six months or even more. You have to wait your turn for your draw and how quickly you get the draw, also depends on the banker’s selection order and whether or not you are a reliable partner.
- Sacrifice – Because you now have to make this payment weekly or monthly, you have to give up some habits or cut out unnecessary spending and put the money towards your draw.
- Reward – The greatest feeling is when you get your draw; You feel accomplished/rewarded, having saved the amount of money you now have in hand.
- Tolerance and Flexibility – You have to be open to the fact that the scheme might not go as smoothly as predicted. People might drop out, causing the draw to be renegotiated or someone new has to be added.
- Being Last is Good – Though this is not always so, in this case, the person who gets the last draw feels like they have won the lottery. He or she does not have to worry about having to continue paying into the scheme.