Although Chuka town has maintained cleanliness and is attractive to business people, the establishment of Chuka University in its Ndagani outskirts shifted the major development to the upcoming suburb.
The growth of modern hotels in Ndagani did not make the status any better for the former Central Business District with foodstuff vendors starting new stalls in the outskirt amid their ongoing stalls at the Chuka Open market. Chuka town was only kept afloat by the modern open air market and government offices.
The town however, received a facelift with the completion of the Chuka Picnic grounds and a lactating bay at the open air market.
The picnic grounds with its par anomic scenery and state of the art landscaping has become a great attraction for revelers especially on weekends and public holidays where the youth and families come to savor the closeness to nature. It’s closeness to untamed bushes crates additional ambience to revelers that comes with sufficient oxygen.
“The grounds are always green, am not quite sure if they water the grass or what really happens but all in all it’s usually a nice chilling spot for all people,” Immaculate Kangai, a middle aged lady told KNA.
“It’s only closed during maintenance and it’s always clean. We as youths usually hangout at the picnic grounds,” Mercy Kamene, a teenager disclosed.
The grounds are not used for picnic only but there are government events that are hosted there too. Personal occasions such as weddings and family get-togethers are also held there for a small fee paid to the Tharaka Nithi County Government.
The town has further received a boost to business with the completion of a lactating bay right in the middle of the open air market. Mothers can now go about their business without the fear of their babies disappearing in the crowded atmosphere.
They no longer need to leave them behind with house girls at home since nannies here are paid by the county government to take care of the infants.
A talk with the nannies, Emma John and Betty Nyaga, shed more light on the operations of the bay. They explained that the daycare is usually opened from Monday to Friday and runs from 8 am to 4 pm.
“There is an age limit of 3 years and below. We only accept small children below seven months if the mother is in sight,” Emma John discloses to KNA.
“There is a challenge with the play toys. And we can’t request the parents to provide because of kid’s rivalry,” Betty Nyaga says as she complements her colleague.
KNA also spoke to parents who have benefitted from the bay with Linda Gatwiri saying that the trained nannies are good and ensure the children are attended to all the time.
“In case of anything we are usually called,” she explained. Her sentiments were echoed by Susan Wanja, a vegetables vendor at the market.
“In the past, anytime my child disappeared from my eyesight, I had to go and look for her and at that moment I could lose several customers. With the bay at hand I no longer have to worry.
This keeps my mind at peace while I concentrate with my customers,” Susan further explained.
Maureen Mukami revealed that it helps her as a parent since the worries of having her child being lost in the market are now a thing of the past.
Besides the open air market, The Tharaka Nithi County government has designated areas and placed metallic containers for disposal of garbage. These containers are usually emptied weekly and the garbage taken to the dump site.
Agostina Mureithi, a watermelon vendor at chuka open air market, explained to KNA that the market is always swept twice a week that is every weekday morning.
‘I appreciate how the County Government usually makes an effort to maintain the market cleanness,’ he explained.
By David Mutwiri and Ruth Mumbe