Jackline Wawira, a 25-year-old lady, has been residing in Nyeri for so long as she will keep in mind. However as a younger lady she has crushed all odds to be touted some of the notable boda boda riders inside Nyeri city and its environs.
Born in 1997 and raised in Nyeri County, Wawira who’s the one little one in her household, attended Kigetuini Major College earlier than continuing to Kigongo secondary college for her Secondary college.
After finishing her fundamental training course, she enrolled on the Nationwide Youth Service (NYS) however later stop and began working for Airtel Kenya hawking the telco’s merchandise, she needed to stop the job owing to poor gross sales that affected her earnings to an ideal deal.
Wawira advised KNA that she determined to stop her earlier jobs on account of low earnings and opted to enterprise into the bodaboda enterprise. She stated her determination to maneuver into the male dominated sector was borne out of her childhood dream of proudly owning her personal automotive in the future.
As well as, even though she is but to comprehend the dream, she says the imaginative and prescient nonetheless stays. For now, her focus is to work and save as a lot cash as potential and see the place the subsequent highway leads.
“Beginning a enterprise was not simple for me and so I made a decision to safe a mortgage with a purpose to have my very own bike. I began with the motorcycle as a result of that’s what I may afford on the time,” Wawira narrates.
The excellent news is that she has already accomplished paying off the mortgage. Since she ventured into her present enterprise, she says her mother and father are her greatest cheerleaders, all the time there to pat her again.
She not solely manages to supply for her each day fundamental wants however can also be in a position to chip in at any time when her household wants her help.
Nonetheless, being a girl in a male dominated area has its fair proportion of challenges starting from being frowned upon to outright sexual harassment. At different occasions her purchasers seem reluctant to trip on her bike for concern she won’t be regular sufficient.
One other problem in accordance with her is that a few of her prospects are inclined to disappear together with her cash after proposing to pay through their cell phones.
“The challenges I encounter in my day-to-day work are many on this occupation and even develop into profound once you think about that I’m a girl working amongst males. At occasions I ferry male purchasers who seem like real prospects however when you hit the highway, they cling to you in an inappropriate method,” she says.
“Different occasions you find yourself dropping your cash after somebody guarantees to pay the fare via the cell phone cost platform however finally ends up reversing the cash. By the point you understand you will have been swindled, the shopper has already turned not far away and vanished among the many crowds of individuals,” she factors out.
Coupled with such challenges embody her security and the safety of her bike owing to the very fact she typically works previous 9pm. Throughout such late hours, Wawira is all the time cautious about her pillion passengers and solely ferries individuals she is both conversant with or girls who’re hardly ever a menace.
She, nonetheless, hopes to open one other enterprise some day and rent riders who will handle her bikes as soon as she saves sufficient from her present occupation. Regardless of the challenges. the job has enabled her to cater for her repairs with out having to depend on anyone.
To younger individuals nonetheless discriminating the type of occupation they will undertake, Wawira urges them to discard such mentality and do no matter comes their approach as they wait for his or her dream jobs.
“Within the close to future, I plan to open a much bigger enterprise because of the demanding nature of this job. I additionally plan to purchase extra bikes and even drive my very own automotive. There are many jobs on the market however I really feel lots of the younger individuals are too picky in relation to on the lookout for employment alternatives,” she provides.
Michael Nderitu, who’s a colleague heaps numerous praises on Nyawira and described her as a devoted and diligent rider. As a consequence of her dedication, Nderitu hardly ever leaves her out at any time when a possibility arises during which an additional operator is required.
“At any time when there’s a job alternative on the market which she can’t handle, Nyawira typically alerts us. I equally contact her any time I’ve a couple of passenger name her once I get a job that requires greater than two individuals,” says Nderitu.
Sarah Wanjiku, 20 is an vehicle repairer working downtown close to the Nyeri city matatu terminus. When KNA met her at her storage, Wanjiku was in her customary blue working overalls, black sport footwear and a black cap prepared to undertake her routine duties.
She was born in Nyeri in a household of 5 youngsters. She attended Temple Street major college earlier than becoming a member of Riamukurwe Secondary College the place accomplished her research in 2019.
Wanjiku nonetheless says it was throughout her childhood days when she developed a liking for the automotive trade, a ardour which was to form her profession path in life.
“Instantly after I accomplished my highschool research in 2019, I launched into coaching as a mechanic specializing in electrical wiring. It has nonetheless, taken me two years to achieve the required abilities,” narrates Wanjiku.
Not like different girls who are sometimes shy to take such odd jobs on account of societal prejudice, Wanjiku says she was fortunate since her household has all the time stood by her facet urging her to comply with her coronary heart.
And amongst those that have cheered her most is her mom. “I not rely on my household since I began this job. I’ve additionally been in a position to hire my very own home and cater for my private wants. Above all I’m blissful since a lot of the prospects respect my work even though I’m a girl,” Wanjiku provides.
She narrates that the most important problem one faces on this occupation is that within the means of repairing a buyer’s car one might harm it by mistake. “Regardless of being an knowledgeable on this profession, we nonetheless discover ourselves making some errors. That’s why it’s crucial to maintain on studying and unlearning so that you can preserve bettering,” she provides.
Martin Ngari, who’s Wanjiku’s coworker, describes her as a hardworking lady who at occasions works higher than among the male colleagues. He heaps praises on her for her professionalism and excessive sense of self-discipline at work, including that on this profession one must be assured.
“She is dedicated to her work and has thus far yielded good outcomes. I by no means get complaints from prospects and at any time when I’m not round, she handles every thing nicely. Everybody can do that job no matter gender,” says Simon Ndung’u, her boss.
Wanjiku encourages the youth, particularly the younger girls to enterprise in the identical area or every other area that has been historically been male dominated. She is one one who believes in herself and is all the time ready for what might come her approach.
By Samuel Maina and Alex Macharia