Four years ago, the Nation published the story of a 13-year-old boy who had lost hope of joining secondary school despite excelling with 417 marks.
The boy, now 17, is all joy after completing his secondary education at Friends School Kamusinga in Bungoma County with the help of well-wishers.
He scored an A- of 74 points and hopes to become a doctor.
“I will forever be grateful to Nation Media Group for highlighting my plight. It is through the story published in the Daily Nation that I got help to continue with my studies. My mother could not support me because we are a needy family,” Monayo said.
The Nation published the story in its county round-up pages, attracting instant reaction from members of the Kisii community.
The story detailed how the bright but needy boy had to repeat Standard Eight after the 2016 KCPE despite scoring 367 marks and lost an opportunity at Cardinal Otunga High School Mosocho after his mother failed to raise school fees for him.
Monayo re-sat the KCPE exam in 2017 and scored 417 marks out of the possible 500 from Mt Sinai Academy in Ogembo, where he was still being assisted to pay his school fees.
The young boy had been hawking bananas in Kisii town with his mother, who was a single parent then. At the time, they lived in Suneka township in Bonchari constituency, Kisii County.
His mother Beatrice Nyaboke would later marry a man from Mosobeti in Kitutu Masaba constituency, Nyamira County.
But as fate would have it, her husband died, leaving her a widow.
Ms Nyaboke was overwhelmed with joy when the Nation visited her family on Monday.
“I am speechless. I thank my son for keeping the faith. It has not been easy. I thank Nation Media Group for highlighting our plight and four years later, we are celebrating,” said Ms Nyaboke as she thanked well-wishers who continued supporting her son’s education.
Dr Charles Otara, a hotelier in Diani, Kwale County, paid Monayo’s Form One fees.
Dr Otara, the proprietor of Kaskaz Beach Resort in Diani, said he would pay the boy’s school fees and immediately deposited Sh53,000 in the school’s account.
“I could not keep silent after reading the story. I had to act immediately,” said the businessman, who hails from Kisii County, adding that no bright student should discontinue his or her studies for lack of fees.
“For those whom God had blessed, giving back to the society is a blessing. Monayo will join the school of his choice come January,” Dr Otara said.
Well-wishers streaming in
Later, well-wishers James Maisiba, Jonnah Ondieki and Benjamin Miranga, under the group 'Suneka Seito’ (which means “Suneka our home”), visited Monayo’s home and promised their support.
The group had for the last three years supported Monayo by paying his school fees, doing his shopping and providing fare to school.
“The story touched us. It is not that we come from vey well-off families but our need to see our home area grow pushed us into supporting Monayo. We are a group of friends from Suneka who live in Nairobi and each contributed the little we had,” said Mr Maisiba, who sent several emails to NMG, trying to find Monayo’s contacts.
They said fees should never hinder anyone from going to school and vowed to ensure Monayo finished his secondary education.
Unfortunately, top Kisii County government leaders who promised to help Monayo failed to honour their pledge.
A group by the name Gusii Global Group contributed Sh16,000 to help Monayo’s mother.
The group consists of professionals from Kisii who live around the world.