By Betsy Ramser Jaime
Erick Momanyi has big dreams! Living in Kisii, Kenya, he hopes to attend university, but after finishing high school, he lacked the funds to attend.
Not letting this deter him, he came up with a feasible plan that would allow him to support himself, and save money for school. Today, Erick runs a small business selling second-hand clothing. As he continues to work and save his proceeds, he is saving to attend a local college in Kisii. He says, ‘I have a passion for business and I would love to study Business Management in college.’
Although he has had to defer his college plans, for the time being, he is gaining valuable entrepreneurial experience that will be a great complement to his education, when he’s able to return.
As he describes his business he explains, ‘I started my business in 2018. The intention of starting this business has been to help me save enough to join college by the start of next year. I sell second-hand clothes in my local market. I mostly deal with men’s clothes, both casual wear, and business wear. I have been able to build a good clientele, which has raised the demand for my clothes. I still would keep selling second-hand clothes even while studying, too, because I would be taking evening classes.’
As a new member of the Zidisha community, Erick has raised 5 Zidisha funded loans in a short period of time, since February 2020. His loans have ranged in amount from $40-$877, and have been a great source of help to keep going even throughout the pandemic.
Erick has primarily used his Zidisha loans to restock his inventory of clothing of shirts and trousers. He continually receives feedback from his customers, catering to their wants and needs.
Like most business owners, Erick has been forced to pivot and adapt his business during the pandemic. In May 2020, he shared, ‘The pandemic has hurt many businesses but I had to find a new way to cope because I need to make a living, I have taken advantage of online platforms like Jiji, Pigiame and even Facebook, I take photos of my clothes and if someone is interested they contact me and we arrange on how to get, it’s not costly since the buyer pays for delivery charges, this has helped me keep afloat and am sure it will sustain me through this difficult period.’
As the pandemic continued, Erick found that two particular items were in high demand: face masks and sweatpants. Through his Zidisha funded loans, Erick has been able to easily meet these changing needs with his customers. By mid-summer, he also expanded into women’s clothing as well.
Recently on July 27, Erick excitedly shared, ‘Once again I would like to express my gratitude to all my lenders, the support you have given me is Godsent, my business is reaching great heights and that’s thanks to you, I would also like to thank Zidisha.org for bringing this to us business people. Thank you and God bless you.’
Would you like to empower an inspiring entrepreneur like Erick? Make sure to head on over to our Browse Projects page to read about Zidisha business owners all around the world.