Stories

The transformation has just begun: Providing the means for entrepreneurs to live their dreams is transforming families and even whole communities. Thank you for your partnership.

Titika Lopejokwe

UB2 Titika

 

  • Samburu, North Kenya
  • Business: Retail store
  • Loan: $250 to increase inventory in her retail shop

Titika has been an inspiration in her church and village. She was raised in a very poor family, and she was only able to complete primary school (through eighth grade). When she was young she survived a near fatal snake bite, leaving her with a withered hand and arm. However, Titika’s disability has not crushed her spirit. She is an artist and the bread winner for her family. She makes and sells beaded jewelry to local warriors and women. She has opened a small shop to sell jewelry as well as beads and bead-making accessories and local types of cloth.

September 2013: Titika received her loan for $250.

March 2014: Titika repaid her loan in full and has requested a second loan for $125. She is now married and has a little baby. The baby’s name is Namaiyana. Titika and her husband rented a small plot and started a large garden. They recently acquired a piece of property and are working to build a house of their own. This is a transformation! The community is starting to see what a difference UBuild2 is making and that by working anyone can have success. It is so amazing to see this growth. Titika’s husband started doing volunteer road repairs to help the lorry get to town. This means hauling rocks by hand to fill in the cracks and crevices in the earth. It is backbreaking labor but for him it is a labor of love; he wants to see the community continue to grow and see the lorry be able to bring in goods and take out livestock.

July 2014: Titika repaid her second loan in full. She and her husband Alex are doing quite well. They have their own plot of land that Alex has fenced. Soon they will build a traditional style house and duka. With the money they save on rent they will increase their stock of goods. Alex is still one of the greatest helpers with road repairs!

 

Stephen Lesido

UB2 Stephen

  • Samburu, North Kenya
  • Business: Cell phone and battery recharging
  • Loan: $325 to purchase solar panels

Stephen has two businesses. He has a barber shop or “kinyoz,” which he named Adams’ Barber
Shop. When asked why, he said with a big grin, “Because Adam was the first man who needed a haircut.” Stephen also has a business which charges cellular telephones and batteries. Because there is no electricity in Arsim, Stephen uses solar energy to charge the cells.

September 2013: Stephen received his loan of $325.

March 2014: Stephen repaid his loan in full.

June 2015: Stephen has partnered with Joseph Lekiya. They started off as individual loan recipients but quickly realized that in partnership they could achieve more than they could as individuals. They have set up satellite locations for their business, begun selling at local farmers’ markets, and they have included transportation in the business. They bought a motorcycle which greatly increases their market territory.

 

Sandi Lekadaa

UB2 Sandi

  • Samburu, North Kenya
  • Business: Retail store
  • Loan: $200 to increase inventory for her retail store

Sandi is a leader in her church’s choir and women’s Bible study. She first started a duka (small store) selling staples such as flour, corn meal, and sugar. She has been able to send her children to school and she’s been a wonderful example of a businesswoman in her community.

January 2014: Sandi received her loan for $200.

March 2014: Mama Sandi was so thrilled to get her loan. We (UB2 Field Partners) brought her posho, maize, sugar, and other sundry items to start with.

July 2014: Sandi repaid her loan in full and is doing very well. She used some of her profits to invest in livestock and ended up tripling her initial investment! She has also done well in her duka and in now able to keep that business going in addition to the livestock.

 

Joseph Lekiya

UB2 Joseph

  • Samburu, North Kenya
  • Business: Retail store
  • Loan: $375 to increase his inventory of clothing items and sundry goods

Joseph started a small business selling clothes at various markets called “sokos,” where people gather to buy and sell clothing, livestock, and other items. He also had a small store or “duka” where he keeps regular business hours.

January 2014: Joseph received his loan of $375.

March 2014: Joseph married and has expanded his operations. He has multiplied his ‘retail outlets’ in several villages and is doing very well. This is why he was able to marry. He felt he was stable and able to take that next step in his life.

July 2014: Joseph repaid his loan in full and he is expanding again! Now that he is married his wife watches the shop in Arsim and he travels more to soko (market). He took over Stephen’s barbershop when Stephen moved for new work. His wife and two sons run the shop now, and they are taking to it naturally. Joseph is applying for a small business loan to buy a motorcycle. This will enable him to carry more products to more places, and he will be able to make deliveries to his retail locations.

September 2014: While we (Vincent and Julia, UB2 Field Directors) visit the USA, Joseph will manage the microlending program.

September 2015: Joseph is partnering with Stephen Lesido. They started off as individual loan recipients but quickly realized that in partnership they could achieve more than they could as individuals. They have set up satellite locations for their business, began selling at local farmers’ markets, and they have included transportation in the business. They bought a motorcycle which greatly increased their market territory.

January 2016: Joseph got a job at local revenue department, but he continues to run his business without any problems. This is a standard practice in Kenya because many jobs cannot pay enough salary so having a good business and job ensures success for people. Many people are saying our Ubuild2.org Loan Program has brought many blessings to the community of Arsim, Praise His mighty name!

 

Lng’aur Lekilipan

UB2 Lngaur

  • Samburu, North Kenya
  • Business: Sundry goods
  • Loan: $600 to increase his inventory in sundry goods

Lng’aur has a retail shop with sundry goods. He and his wife, Rose, and their daughter live in the north Kenyan town, Illaut, about 16 km from Arsim. Besides his microenterprise, Lng’aur is the head of security in Illaut, plus he volunteers his time for the distribution of food supplies to the destitute on behalf of the government. Rose is also a strong leader in their community too. Lng’aur’s business is four years old and he wants to build it up with a microloan.

Details about the business: Lng’aur sells sugar, tea leaves, washing soap, cooking fat, posho, other sundry items, and Coca-Cola and other soft drinks which people like down there because it is hot. He also buys goats and sells them.

March 2014: Lng’aur received his loan for $600.

September 2015: Lng’aur repaid his loan in full.

January 2016: Lng’aur got a job working with a project in Illaut that is developing wind power in an area called Lake Turkana/Sarima, which is one of the largest wind power project in Africa. He runs his business without any problems. This is a standard practice in Kenya because many jobs cannot pay enough salary. Having a good business and job ensures success for people.

 

Keno Lechana

UB2 Keno

  • Samburu, North Kenya
  • Business: Farm
  • Loan: $375 for irrigation equipment

Keno is married with four children. He is an active church and community member. Keno has started a garden project in his village from which he regularly gives produce to his church. Keno has a vision to create a much larger garden or farm in the area as a small business, selling the produce to the people in his town. In developing an irrigation system he has acquired a solar powered water pump for his well, but he needs additional equipment to complete the project and a water tank in which to store the water.

Details about the business: Keno sells local style foods in his hoteli, like chapatis, mandazis (local pastry type foods), tea, beans and rice, and sometimes a type of stew when goat meat is available. In his duka he sells items like the others do but his duka is on the very edge of town so he is not competing with the stores in town. He also sells bean, maize, banana, papaya, and chili peppers from his garden.

June 2014: Keno received loan of $375.

December 2014: Keno has shown wonderful success in his agriculture business, which has been a subject of inspiration in the community of Arsim. It has been exciting to watch his garden grow in this desert region. The most encouraging aspect is seeing the appreciation the local people have for Keno’s garden. He is the first person in the community of Arsim doing gardening with great success. His farm has corn, bananas, beans, papaya, peppers, pumpkins, and a variety of greens similar to spinach. We call it Sukuma wiki. Keno also operates a small hotel business which has been successful. He sells hot drinks and food, such as tea, beans, and rice to the locals.

September 2015: Keno repaid his loan in full.

 

Kureyo Jumaale

UB2 Kureyo

  • Samburu, North Kenya
  • Business: Retail store
  • Loan: $500 to increase the inventory for her shop

Kureyo and her husband have worked as missionaries in Arsim since the early 1980’s. They have 7 children. Kureyo sells hoteli
items, like chapatis, mandazis, tea, beans and rice, and sometimes goat stew. Her hoteli is in Arsim; it’s pretty much the only one. She also travels to Illaut on soko (market) days to cook the same items. In her duka she sells posho, beans, sugar, tea leaves, soap, matches, batteries, a few plastic items, and some other small items. Kureyo is very industrious, and her business has done well enough that the couple has been able to send their children to school. However, the recession nearly destroyed their business, which they’ve been rebuilding ever since.

March 2015: Kureyo received her loan for $500.

November 2015: Kureyo shows great determination in her business. She is well organized and has a good customer base, which she is building up. Kureyo has always been a business woman but her skills have grown with her loan. She has dedication to repayment of her loan and she has taken all her teaching and advice to heart. Her primary hoteli in Arsim flourishes and she opened up a satellite location at the Illaut soko (market). She has even diversified into the livestock market.

April 2016: Kureyo has not been able to repay her loan yet. She and her husband were doing very well. However, he made a bad investment in cows and lost money. He says that he learned his lesson, that livestock need very careful attention. Kureyo and her husband are devoted to repaying the loan within the next few months.

 

Martin Lekuye

UB2 Martin

  • Samburu, North Kenya
  • Business: Wholesale nylon and sundry shop
  • Loan: $350 to increase his supply of nylon and other products

Martin was an entrepreneur just starting out, buying, and selling nylon. This product is sold in large quantities to families as a cover for traditional Samburu homes. Martin is a hardworking man in the community, always available to help whenever a need arises. He wants to use the loan to purchase more nylon and other products, like sugar, cooking fat, and corn flour for his store. Martin is from Arsim, where he serves as an elder in the community. Like many others he assists with the ongoing need for roadwork and also the construction of homes. He is married and has five children, all of whom attend school. Martin was one of the first men in Arsim to become a Christian evangelist, working with the pioneer missionaries from World Mission Prayer League.

March 2015: Martin received his loan for $350.

December 2015: Martin repaid his loan in full.

January 2016: Martin has been focusing on livestock and is showing good work. He still has good stock of animals for the business as well as putting his son through secondary school.

 

Helena Lasankurukuri

UB2 Helena

  • Samburu, North Kenya
  • Business: Livestock
  • Loan: $250 to purchase livestock

Helena lives in a village called Ingilai, which is near Wamba in the Samburu region of north Kenya. She is married and has four children. She is a very active member in her church, and her husband once served the church as an evangelist, and he continues to play different roles in the congregation. Helen leads the women’s church outreach team. She is known in the area as a woman of action and as a Jesus loving lady.

Helena has a livestock business that has been a big blessing to her family. They live close to an animal market place which helps her monitor market trends.

March 2015: Helena received her loan for $250.

September 2015: Helena has expanded her herd of goats; she’s done well in the livestock market. Her shop has grown to include many items for sale in her extremely remote location. She purchased a solar light system and now she’s able to protect her herd at night from leopards and to provide light for her children to study in the evenings. She’s added chickens to her livestock trade, selling eggs as well as providing food for her family.

November 2015: Helena repaid her loan in full.

February 2016: Heavy rains caused supply shortages at Helena’s duka. However, her livestock trade has continued to thrive. Diversifying is what kept her going during the floods. With roads open now she will be able to restock the duka. Vincent says that he hopes someday to have Helena teach about business creation and management to others.

 

Ltriman Lekuye

UB2 Ltriman

  • Samburu, North Kenya
  • Business: Retail Store
  • Loan: $300 to increase the inventory in his store

Ltriman is a hard working young man employed by a successful entrepreneur. He just started his own shop selling clothes, shoes, and beads. Ltriman is married and has a son.  He’s very active in his church and in his community, assisting with the ongoing need for roadwork and also with youth sports programs.

October 2015: Ltriman received his loan for $300.

February 2016: Ltriman had a great clientele but he found that the shop became a challenge when his mother became ill. He decided to sell of of his stock and reinvest in livestock. Then he persuaded other family members to watch his herd. Ltriman’s mother died, and he has struggled. However, his livestock business is doing well. He has paid off part of his loan, and he is on schedule to pay it off this spring. He is thinking of reopening his duka at a later time.

 

Nasotu Nolorokuchu

UB2 Nasotu

  • Samburu, North Kenya
  • Business: Retail Store
  • Loan: $125 to increase the inventory in her store; second loan request of $500 to build up her retail business even more

Nasotu has an existing business, selling beans, rice, sugar, salt, and beads.

She is from the village, Ngurinit. Her business has proven to be a success and she is asking for a loan to increase her inventory. Nasotu is married and has four children. She is a very active member in her community, leading a women’s group, encouraging and training other women in business fundamentals.

March 2015: Nasotu received her loan of $125.

November 2015: Nasotu has been so successful in building her business that she has become a mentor and trainer for other women. She has formed a group of five women in her efforts to promote transformation. These women have all started small businesses and they work together as an alliance.

December 2015: Nasotu repaid her loan.

February 2016: Nasotu has a great client base established at the Illaut soko and it is often hard to catch a glimpse of her through the crowd in front of her duka. Her personality and business savvy have made her a successful entrepreneur. She suffered some inventory loss when she was robbed by thugs but kept her determination and rose above the challenge to restock her duka and even added to what she had. She is so thankful for her loan and seeks another. On a personal note I would add that she recently revealed to us that she is a survivor of violent spousal abuse and decided after taking her children and literally running for her life that she would not only survive but overcome and take care of herself and her children.

 

Joel Wanyeri

UB2 Joel

  • Samburu, North Kenya
  • Business: Manufacturing
  • Loan: $500 to purchase raw materials

Joel lives in a small village called Wamba in the Samburu region of north Kenya with his wife, Wa Mbura, and their three children. He is known throughout the area as a man devoted to the Lord. His wife is busy in the community, working on several projects.

Joel is a professional welder. He makes water troughs which the locals use to give animals salt as well as water from the singing wells in Samburu region. He also makes donkey carts which are used to transport water and other goods. In addition, Joel is a mechanic, repairing vehicles in the area.

Capital to purchase materials to build the water troughs is a major challenge for Joel. He and his wife lost two young children which lead them into financial hardship. The hospital bills overwhelmed them. The Lord did bless them last year with another baby, whom they care for so very much. Unfortunately, Joel has been unable to get his business back on track due to a lack of capital.

Joel is asked for a loan to restart his business. He will use the funds to purchase iron sheets to make the water troughs and donkey carts.

September 2015: Joel received his loan of $500.

November 2015: Joel was ecstatic to receive his loan and is busy making all sorts of products. He is quite the inventor and finds markets for his products. He was able to purchase needed materials and his wife setup a small duka (shop).

February 2016: Here are some of Joel’s inventions. One is a gutter making machine. He cut some chicken feeders from PVC pipe after designing and making a tool to cut the holes. Also there is the heat efficient oven and cooker. He has had several orders for them. He is a man who is very enterprising and always on the lookout to design a new product. His engineering skills combined with his electrical, mechanical, and general knowledge skills make him an ideal entrepreneur; all he needed was the loan to buy materials.

 

Naifaamu Lekadaa

UB2 Naifaamu

  • Samburu, North Kenya
  • Business: Retail
  • Loan: $225 to increase the inventory in her home business

Naifaamu has a small business at home for many years now with good success record. She is married and has four daughters and two sons. Because of her home business she manages to feed her family as well as build a good size herd of goats. Naifaamu requested a loan of $225 to increase stock inventories in her home business where she sells sugar, tea leaves and other small items that earns her profits.

October 2015: Naifaamu received her loan for $225.

April 2015: Naifaamu repaid her loan. She was very excited to have done so. The field partner decided to subsidize her purchase of a solar system so that she can run her store after dark and offer cell phone charging services. Way to go Naifaamu!