When Cornet was a young boy growing up on the outskirts of our Nairobi site in Kenya, he always dreamed of achieving an education of his own, something many of his family members and peers didn’t have access to. Even though he worked incredibly hard throughout school, he struggled to make ends meet for both his academic and family life, and couldn’t afford to continue his studies after high school.
Last year, when Cornet learned of Chalice’s Business Entrepreneurship Program at our Nairobi site through a friend, he attended conferences to learn more about business management. He started attending regularly, and soon applied to pitch his small business idea to our site to be considered for funding. He came fully prepared with hopes that he would emerge successful; and he did! He received a total of $1031 CAD to start a small cyber café! He purchased two desktop computers, a photocopier, a scanner with a printer, a binding machine, chairs, and a desk.
Cornet’s business is unique as he caters his prices to needy students within the community. Many students can’t afford computers to complete their schoolwork, and many schools lack equipment or books. His business allows students to use computers and printing services at an accessible price, allowing them to complete their education without lofty barriers. He also offers services such as the delivery of documents and projects to the client’s doorstep!
So far, Cornet’s business has been a great success. He’s been able to expand his business by purchasing a laptop, extra tables, and a bulk supply of printer paper. He’s so happy that with his income, he’s able to offer some support to his family.
The COVID-19 pandemic brought about some significant changes in Cornet’s community. Cornet moved his cyber café from a rental shop to his own home in order to save money during the lockdown. With that came new ideas as he vowed to serve the community through printing and providing free educational materials for struggling primary, secondary and university students.
“Cornet works very hard and keeps our site updated with his progress regularly,” say Odhiambo Mark, a social worker from our Nairobi site. “We are all proud of him!”