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Meet Cynthia Mutia Munyiva – TujengeKibera Award Recipient!

As promised KDI took some time to catch up with TujengeKibera award recipient, Cynthia Mutia Munyiva. We asked her a few questions about who she is and her thoughts on winning the TujengeKibera competition. Below is the interview we conducted with this lucky lady!

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About Cynthia Mutia Munyiva

Age:  27
Status:  Married
Gender:   Female
Home: Lindi, Kibera and Machakos

Getting to Know Cynthia

How old are you?

  • 27, born in 1989

Are you married?

  • Yes, I have been married for 8 years.

Has anyone, other than your husband, ever proposed to you?

  • No

Do you have any children?

  • I have two children, one is 7 months and the second is 7.5 years. The 7 month old is a boy called Douglas and the 7.5 year old girl is called Purity.

That is quite an age gap, why the age gap?

  • I wanted my first child to grow a bit [before I had my next].

Do you have any piercings or tattoos?

  • No,  and I don’t want them.

What is your favorite food?

  • Ugali, because when I eat ugali I feel like I am stronger.

Where are you from in Kenya? Is Kibera your home or do you have a shags (rural home)?

  • My home is in Machakos.

How often do you visit it?

  • Every two months I visit Machakos.

What is your favorite thing about your shags (rural home)?

  • I like the place because it is very good, there is rain and food there, like maize. It is where my parents stay.

Why did you move to Kibera?

  • Kibera is where I finished my secondary education. I came to stay with my aunt who helped me because my father was not well-up [well-off].

Where do you live in Kibera?

  • At Lindi [village], I decided to stay [in Kibera] because I feel I am comfortable.

What is your profession?

  • I am a salonist at Kenyatta market, I work at stall 480 [braiding hair]. I like my job because I see there is profit and it assists me to do something like raising my children and paying school fees.

What is your favorite thing about living in Kibera?

  • I like living in Kibera because I can afford it and there are cheap things [in the settlement], even houses are cheap. [I like] The location-even when I want to go to town it is near.

What don’t you like about living in Kibera?

  • The rubbish and dirty toilets.

Do you have any hobbies?

  • I like braiding hair and walking (I walk from my house to my job).

Name 1-3 dreams you have for 2017 or life in general?

  • For 2017 I haven’t thought about any, but one day I will have my own salon.

Any other fun facts or interesting tit-bits you want to share about yourself?

  • For now, I don’t have.

Winning #TujengeKibera

What was your first reaction when you found out that you won the competition?

  • I was very happy; I could not believe I had won.

Why did you apply for the competition when it was first announced?

  • I was trying to see if I could take part, if I can give an example of Safaricom people try and try to win and I thought, if I try and win I can help many kids in Kibera.

Did you think that you had a strong chance at winning the competition?

  • Yes, I saw that I could win!

Why did you want to start a program that gave children school fees and resources to go to school?

  • That this is something that could help children, because in Kibera many parents do not have school fees for their children.

What kind of impact do you think that your fund will have on students’ lives?

  • I think it will help children do better in class when they see this type of opportunity. It will improve the moral of the children who don’t have school fees so they are encouraged to keep learning. Buying books will also help them.

The details of the fund will continue to be developed, are you excited about the process and do you think that you will encounter any challenges as you move forward?

  • Yes, it is good to help. I don’t think that I will encounter any challenges.

Do you think that ANWA School will be excited about working with you to develop the fund?

  • Yes, because they will see how I am helping their children and open their hearts and hands.

Do you think that the fund will be sustainable in the long run?

  • I think so, for example the books will be bought for ANWA and they will help many people. I think that when I sit with the Board of Managers [at ANWA] we can sit and think around it and it can be a sustainable project [that goes beyond three years].

After 3 years do you want the program to continue? If you do, how will the program continue? Do you have any ideas about how you will make it sustainable?

  • Ndio [Yes], I want it to go beyond 3 years. But, I haven’t thought about how it will go beyond 3 years yet.

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