Pushing Back Against All Limits: Jackline’s Story

By Davina Ngei

A year ago, Jackline’s sole source of income was preparing lunch for men working at a construction site. Today, she’s a senior sales agent at LivelyHoods, promoting clean energy adoption within her community and learning essential entrepreneurial and sales skills.

I met Jackline Wanyama during a visit to LivelyHoods- a social enterprise that creates dignified employment for youth and women living in Kenya’s urban slums- where she shared her story.

Jackline finished her form 4 in 2001, but did not have the means to go further with her studies. That’s when she started her food business, unfortunately, her difficulty with speaking to others limited her ability to market herself and her business.

While walking on a road early last year, Jackline was given a LivelyHoods flyer which she followed up on.

LivelyHoods offered her a free 2 week training seminar in sales, entrepreneurship, and speaking, and then gave her the opportunity to apply those skills as a sales agent for clean energy technologies (e.g. clean cookstoves & solar lamps) within Kawangware.

Jackline took full advantage of the opportunities provided to her, and after 3 months of exceptional sales she was promoted to senior sales agent where she continues to flourish and learn.

Like many women who have received training and employment through LivelyHoods, Jackline aims to transfer the skills and confidence she has developed into building her own thriving business.

The impact that one woman can have on her community when she receives the right vocational training, resources, and emotional support is amazing. It’s crucial that we work together to provide training programs for women and youth so that they can become beacons in their communities.