It is hard not to spot Charles Mogembo, along Hospital Road - Kisii town as he works hard polishing and mending shoes.
Unable to pursue his secondary education, the 37-year-old set off with an initial capital of Sh500 with which he used to buy shoe brushes, washing soap, shoe polish, thread and repair tools.
Mogembo, from Kiong’anyo village near Kisii town, reports early at his humble work station which is the only source of livelihood for the father of five.
“I make Sh300 per day which increases to Sh500 during the rainy season when demand for my services is high,” he says.
While he serves anyone who walks to his stand, Mogembo says he has regular customers who he depends on to put something in his pocket at the end of the day.
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The job has its demands some of which Mogembo says are having to deal with the vagaries of weather and unreasonable, impatient clients who harass him and make it difficult for him to do his work effectively.
“I have been working at this spot, out in the open, for the last 18 years having to endure strong winds, heavy rains and sunlight,” he says.
While the Sh20 or Sh50 Mogembo makes from his clients may seem very minimal, it is an amount that ensures he is able to put food on the table for his family.
“I have learned how to budget and work with the little amount I get at the end of the day in order to ensure that my family’s basic needs are met,” he says.nt to allow him do his job effectively thus they start harassing him to speed up.
He adds that there is high competition from his counterparts and these encourage him to work hard for the quality services to his customers.