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"The Fish in Kenya Are Not Educated"
Pastor Joseph Ndungu is one of our most active borrowers on Zidisha. Pastor Ndungu is from Rongai, Kenya where he lives with his wife and 10 children. Besides running his ministry, and helping with his large family, Pastor Ndungu also creates canvas bags for school children and seat covers for motorcycles. Pastor Ndungu wanted his Zidisha loan so he could purchase the material needed to make the Boda Boda (motorcycle seat covers). Our in country Client Relationship Manager Achintya Rai recently met with Pastor Ndungu. Read about their encounter below:
Pastor Ndungu creating his bags
Hello lenders, My name is Achintya Rai and I am Zidisha’s Kenya Client Relationship Intern. I recently met Pastor Joseph Ndungu in Rongai town of Nakuru. Pastor Ndungu’s main business is making seat covers for bikes from a material called Rexine (a Wikipedia search reveals that Rexine was a British trademark that has now become the generic name for this leather like synthetic material). He also makes school bags and he used his Zidisha loan to buy canvas for making these. The Pastor told me that he got the loan at the right time because he had just then received an order for 280 school bags Pastor Ndungu is a very very jovial and interesting man. He seems to be very popular in his area and is full of life. He is also a dynamic businessman. He has designed fishing hooks that look like live insects. When I asked him if there was much demand for such hooks, he said “the fish in Kenya are not educated enough for this kind of bait” so he mostly looks for exporting these. Apart from designing these hooks/bait, he also designs jewelry. He says that while the fishing hooks are for husbands, the jewelry is for the wives. He explains- “what’ll the wife do when you go fishing?” Pastor Ndungu’s workshop is the railway station of Rongai. No trains stop here any more so he rents the place (the small railway station), which also serves as the church on Sundays. He also makes covers for bibles. When I asked him how he learnt to make all these things, he told me that he trained to stitch clothes and everything else is “just from God” Just before I was leaving someone tried to pull the Pastor’s leg and said, “now the pastor will show us his tie”. Pastor Ndungu replied, “First good Christians have to PAY FOR my tie!” Pastor Ndungu told me that on Sundays his church is full of people. Looking at his energy, charm, great wit and charisma, I’m not surprised. I had a great time talking to him and I wish him the best of luck for his future. Achintya Nairobi 1st April 2012