The National Hygiene Programme (NHP), dubbed Kazi Mtaani has had immense positive socio- economic impact to youths in Nyamira, who had previously been impoverished due to adverse effects of Coronavirus in the country.
Local youth incorporated into the programme have not only managed to sustain themselves but also their dependents, besides initiating a myriad of small economic projects which will continue sustaining them after the project comes to an end.
One of the enterprising youths, Victor Gitenyi, 30, working at Magombo ward in Manga Sub-County has managed to rent a piece of land at Sh4000 which he is currently utilizing to make construction bricks, a lucrative venture he was not able to start initially due to lack of capital.
“Before I was recruited to the Kazi Mtaani programme I could only be hired by other people to make them bricks at a cost of Sh1 per brick, a very meager earning that couldn’t enable me save sufficient money to hire land and also make my own bricks,” Victor narrated to KNA.
“When I got a chance to be enrolled in the programme, I invested my very first earnings to the brick making project which will definitely bear fruit not too long from now,” he said.
Gitenyi further told KNA that apart from renting a piece of land he also managed to employ one person who is making the bricks at a small fee, while he remains engaged at the kazi Mtaani, since the venture does not require much supervision.
Yet another beneficiary of the national government initiative, Nehemia Asoti, 26, from Tombe, a National Youth Service graduate was recruited as a supervisor and with earnings from Kazi Mtaani, he has managed to purchase seven Kenyan German Alpine goats and purchased 95 poultry birds in a group they formed and registered during their engagement.
“The now Sh35,000 investments is duly managed by my wife, while I’m away from home so that she can also become a co-partner in the farming venture which I am optimistic will ultimately give us economic returns to enable us sustain our young family for it has become difficult by day to secure white collar jobs,” he noted.
Asoti hopes to be the leading supplier of healthy goats to a nearby slaughterhouse, famous for its supply of quality meat in Tombe centre and beyond.
And for Vinic Nyakeoga from Manga, apart from buying goats and a young heifer, she used part of her earnings to pay school fees for her two sons at boarding school following the sudden death of her husband early last year.
At the same time, other youths under the kazi Mtaani programme have come up with varied economic projects ranging from growing of nappier grass, starting tea and tree nurseries, purchase of motorcycles, opening boutiques and saloons as well as formation and registration of youth groups to attract government funding, all aimed at ensuring future sustainability of their livelihoods.
The county director of Housing and urban development, Mr. Boaz Mirieri told KNA Thursday that they were still waiting for official communication amid media reports that President Uhuru Kenyatta has since conceded to public demand to extend the programme
On his part, the County Commissioner, Amos Mariba commended the government for engaging the youth meaningfully especially during the pandemic period, adding that it helped in a big way to curb potential incidents of crime due to idleness and an unforeseen economic crisis.
Nyamira County employed a total of 2533 youths and 87 supervisors under the Kazi Mtaani programme to cushion them from the adverse economic effects occasioned by the novel pandemic that ravaged the global economy.
by Deborah Bochere