What you need to know:
- The idea of learning to ride first crossed her mind in 2014, when she bought a second-hand motorbike.
- She handed it over to a young man for business.
- He was riding my bike carelessly, it began to wear out, yet she had not recovered her cash.
- Venture if taken seriously, can change the lives of many youths given the soaring rates of unemployment in the country.
“The sky is the limit,” this is what drives Ms Phanice Nyanchera, a 32-year-old mother of two, and a boda boda operator in Chepilat, Borabu, Nyamira county.
A resident of Matutu-Isoge village, Ms Nyachera is one of the few female riders eking a living in what is presumed to be a male dominated industry.
The idea of learning to ride first crossed her mind in 2014, when she bought a second-hand motorbike for Sh30,000, and handed it over to a young man for business.
He was to remit to her some money on a daily basis as they had agreed but only a week after starting work, the young lad did not keep to the agreement.
Began to wear out
“We had agreed that every evening, he was to pay me Sh400 but this only happened in the first week. In the following days, he failed and I remember one day he told me that he had only made Sh50."
"Besides that, he was riding my bike carelessly since it began to wear out, yet I had not recovered my cash. So, I decided to take it back. While figuring out what to do next, an idea came to me that I should train and start working for myself. After a month, I obtained my certificate from a local driving school and was good to go. That is how I got on the road,” she narrates.
As a young girl, she used to ride her father’s bicycle and this gave her extra courage when she started taking riding lessons.
The journey as a boda boda operator, she says, is one that requires perseverance, especially as a woman. She says the venture if taken seriously, can change the lives of many youths given the soaring rates of unemployment in the country.
Before the Covid-19 pandemic, Ms Nyanchera could make an average amount of Sh1,500 per day but today, she only manages Sh800.
Her husband who used to work in one of the tea estates was laid off in the wake of Covid-19 pandemic.
She is now the family’s sole breadwinner.
Ms Nyanchera says her biggest challenge is the long working hours.
“I leave for work early because it is a competitive industry. I put in 12 hours so if I clock in at seven in the morning, I work till early evening before dashing home to embark on my house chores,” she says.