As a campus student I didn’t want to imagine what happens after I am done with learning and off into the murky world of responsibilities and job search. Now into the real Kenya, gone are the days a degree was held in high regards; now it’s just a paper — one that brings back memories of dark nights spent reading in the cold. What I came to realize is the ‘survival for the fittest rule’ as I applied for jobs over and over and this became my daily routine. I did not know it would be this hard since I thought to myself that no one should be really begging if they have a degree to their name. But, as it turns out, I did not only need to beg but hustle my way out if I really needed to put food on my plate. At this point the unpredictable economy and the high rate of unemployment can literally drive graduates to unusual lifestyles just so they can survive. Why do we even go to school? In the past it was said that Kenyan youth are struggling to secure decent forms of employment largely due to insufficient vocational skills and limited understanding of job market dynamics. But I wonder what will be the excuse since there are vocational training institutes and its graduates are still unemployed.

I decided to be creative and start my small business of selling handmade leather bags but the problem is the capital. A friend of mine told me about government youth funds called Uwezo fund. So thing are the requirements you need to qualify for the loan:

1.The youth or women group should be registered with the Department of Social Services or the Registrar of Societies with a membership of 9 – 15 members. A Certified copy of Registration Certificate will be required.
2. The youth group membership must be between 18 and 35 years of age.
3. Preference will be granted to groups that have been in existence for at least six (6) months. Minutes of group meetings will be required.
4. The groups should be based and operating within the Constituency it seeks to make an application for consideration for a loan from the Uwezo Fund.
5. The group should operate a table banking (Chama) structure where members make monthly contributions according to the groups’€™ internal guidelines. Evidence of monthly contributions will be required.
6. The group should hold a bank account in the name of the group. Bank statements will be required.
7. They should be recommended by the Chief of the location.
8. Photocopies of IDs and PINs of all the members will be required.
9. List of members that include their ID card numbers and telephone numbers.

So I was excited and applied for a loan, unfortunately I was not lucky. So what do I do? There and then I told myself that creativity and innovation is my only friend but being a Kenyan youth, I’ve found that even creative minds often hit a point in their life where their seemingly endless fountain of ideas runs dry. This is often experienced when one comes up with an idea starts working on it then suddenly stops. That is actually what is always likely to happen when you have an idea without a plan.

Everyone has their own theory about what it takes to get back on the creative wagon. Because everyone is different, no scientific study can apply to every single creative mind, but a little hard work will. Cultivate your creativity by meditation. You live a disciplined life and cultivate good habits, emotional stability and it will help you learn about yourself as well as the mysteries of life. It will give meaning to your life. This is what made me motivated again, and got the business running. To all youths, what are you waiting for? Get up and put that ideas into action just don’t give up yet.

By Ebby


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