Kitty party... Paluwagan... Jam-ia... Sou sou. Whichever way it is called, it's a means to save money. Here's more:
Kitty, in India (and this is according to Tarun), means a pot of money. The Dictionary of Indian English has this meaning:
kitty party: n. a meeting of women where chits are arranged or gossip is exchanged.
chit: n. a financial scheme in which a group of people put in a fixed amount every day/week/month and one of them gets to collect the entire amount by lucky draw each time.
Note: There's 10 of us in the group. 8 women and 3 men. The promoter (and promotor) coined it kitty party...as per Tarun. So yeah, technically, it's supposed to be a meeting of women. But hey, we're all women! Chits are exchanged. Check. Gossip is exchanged. Check. Unique drawings are held. Check. Kitty party all the way!
My mom has something similar in their school, and they call it Sou sou. I went, "su... what??" :P
Fine, count me in. :) The more "diversified" I am in my savings, the better. The Urban Dictionary has this to say:
A savings arrangement where a group of people each pool an equal amount of money for a period time (month, two weeks, etc) and after that time is up, one person in the group gets all that money. They keep doing this till everyone gets their turn and receives that full lump sum at least once. It's not a pyramid scheme, no one loses as long as everyone's trustworthy and puts in their share. It's just a way to hang on to money by putting tying it up into something else temporary. This is popular with 1st-gen Carribbeans, South Americans, Africans, and maybe someother people. Just a way to save money up if you can't get a small savings account, aren't in a credit union, or don't want Tha Man all up in your business.
Note: My mom's group draws the monthly "winner" in the beginning of the Sou Sou. You'll know when to expect your share. You can also request (or switch) for a slot, if let's say you need the money by a certain month. With mom's help, I got the March money pool (I needed it for Andrew's birthday party). Aren't they great?
On to our Filipino version, the Paluwagan. I say, who hasn't joined one??? Same premise: contribute money to a pool on a monthly basis, and the lucky member for the month gets to enjoy the money. It's repeated until all the members get their fair share. I was teasing a friend of mine who didn't know about the paluwagan (or is it more like, patago) that was so "in" during our elementary and high school days. I told her, she probably didn't need to do it anyway. Meanwhile, there I was... often a part of the class savings program. I even got assigned the responsibility of keeping the money safe (which, let me tell you, now that I look back at it, was difficult to do during those years). Look, you got extra cash in your possession... you're young... wouldn't it be convenient to borrow some of it to buy stationery for your collection, or to get yourself a bottle of Denenes? You tell me! Nah. Let me pat myself on the back... good thing I was the responsible class VP and I was also a legionary... no hanky panky.
Okay. So back to my win. What do you say I now do with the money?