My name is Juliet Muthoni Wambui, the last-born daughter to Jane Wambui. I am a student in Nyandarua High, currently in form two. My mother is a single parent who has done everything in her power to educate me and my older sister. As a tea vendor on the beautiful market of Kenol, her meagre income has never been enough to cater to our food, clothing, housing and educational needs but somehow my mother always ensured my sister and I remained in school at all times. However, 2020 was an especially hard year for me and my family. In addition to the pandemic that restricted my mother’s income, she fell seriously ill leaving us with little to no funds to even pay for our rent.
In previous years, my sister and I have always helped our mother in her business during school holidays. We would often cook the tea and clean her utensils as she left to deliver the drink to her customers. But with her illness, we could not deliver the tea as we ourselves had never interacted with her customers. When the time came for me to join form one, I remember how my mother tried to borrow money from friends and family. She managed to find enough for the first term and I joined school with my peers. I had scored a mean grade of A- in my KCPE which qualified me to join a national school which was expensive for my mom to pay.
By the end of the second semester, I was unsure if I would have to transfer to a cheaper day school or drop out of school entirely. At the time, the stress of where my school fees would come from had weighed me down to the point of affecting my performance. Specifically, I dropped from an average of A to A-. I remember how downcast I felt going home after closing school that term. My mother’s heart was broken but we both knew she could not afford the school.
A friend of my mother then referred her to Tuungane Community Foundation. We applied and I was accepted. The day I got the acceptance letter is definitely one of the happiest days of my life since the scholarship saved my education. My mother and I were blown away by all the benefits I was availed with such as full school fees, uniforms, school supplies, transport to and from school. The relief I got reflected in my academic performance. Indeed, without the constant stress of where my fees would come from, I continuously take the lead in my class beating 216 of my fellow peers. I am proudly the first girl in the school’s history to lead an entire form as boys often take the lead. Last prize giving day, I got featured in our school magazine and awarded as the top student in my form.
I am eternally grateful to Tuungane Community Foundation and all its donors who have given me the resources I need to pursue my educational dreams. This scholarship will not only help my future but has also ensured my older sister continues with her education since mom doesn’t have to worry about me.
Juliet Muthoni Wambui.