Stories from Quick Reads and Kenya
Olivia Kidula explains why breastfeeding in public should not stop:
A friend of mine recently gave birth to her first baby girl and is still getting the hang of motherhood. I began to notice she breastfeeds only when no men (besides her husband or father are around) and when she can “comfortably” hide away in a small space. When I mentioned to her that there should be no shame in feeding and nourishing her child in front of anyone, she responded,
“society would rather she starves than look at my breasts.”
The more I thought about the implications of her words the more upset I became. Who would want a child to starve? Who would truly want to deny a child nourishment and comfort at the chest of his mother?
Danstan Obara shows how Kenyans can lead a double life in the US:
The American double life starts by making sure that your social security card does not have the stamp that says “Valid for work only with INS authorization”. The things that people do to get rid of this stamp are amazing. I will not go into those details here.
The next step is to walk into an organization or business and apply for a job. You will have to pretend that you are an American, born and raised in America. This can be a very dumb thing to say sometimes because in many cases when you are fresh out of Kenya, it is difficult for anybody to miss the accent. Amazingly almost everybody I know has always gotten away with it. There is a law against racial and ethnic profiling in America so, employers would rather go with the information they are provided with and stick with what they can prove.
Individuals with visiting visas, who opt to extend there stay do not even get the social security cards. What this means is that they cannot legally work anywhere. The things they do are even more hilarious. It is a psychological fact that white people cannot easily differentiate black people. So people simply share identification documents. Imagine of a guy walking into an office to apply for a job with an identification card that has someone else’s photo on it. Once again, not even one person I know has ever been caught.
Did you know what are the top most visited websites in Kenya? Read James Wamathai's blog post on the subject:
A lot has changed since February, when I did the last Top 50 most visited Kenyan websites list. Budget airline Jambo Jet was launched, NMG’s county paper Nairobi News was launched and then killed off, entertainment website izvipi was relaunched and Sauti Sol released a controversial, but popular, video for their new song ‘Nishike”.
On the websites popularity front, there are a few changes as well.
Kenyan Post has overtaken Ghafla as the most popular blog in Kenya
Jumia, KRA, Career Point Kenya, Helb and Techweez have gone up the ranking.
Niaje, The Star, Orange and Michezo Afrika have gone down in the ranking.
Ben Kiruthi, KU, Kenya Today and Kopo Kopo have joined the top 50 ranking.
This is a fascinating love story between Sam from Kibera, a slum in the city of Nairobi, Kenya and Alissa from Minnesota, USA:
This has to be the love story of the year!!!!! Alissa is from Minnesota while Sam is born & bred from Kibera. So how did these two lovebirds come to meet?
Alissa had come to Kenya and for several months she had been working with the people living in Kibera. For several months as she took the Matatu (Public transport) home she would spot Sam, a young talented man who ran his own Africanised jewellery store just by the road side. One fine day, as Sam was having a banana next to his shop, he spotted a beautiful white lady seated on the right hand side of the Matatu. He was mesmerised by what he saw and with the last remaining 5 shillings that he had in his pocket, he decided to buy her a banana too. So he asked the nice lady at the shop for another banana and went to give it to the beautiful lady that he had just spotted. Luck was not on his side, since as soon as he got to the window next to where she sat, the matatu sped off. He ran after it but it was too late, the matatu had left and so had the girl of his dreams.
Le continent africain apparaît comme la nouvelle frontière mondiale du développement numérique. Ce développement provoque une nouvelle impulsion entrepreneuriale en Afrique, et notamment en Afrique francophone. Mais ce potentiel reste très largement méconnu en Europe ainsi qu'en France.
The African continent appears to be the new global frontier of digital development. This development has caused a new entrepreneurial impulse in Africa, particularly in Francophone Africa. But this potential remains largely unknown in Europe and in France.
To change this, Samir, author of the blog Startup BRICS [fr] that specializes in start-ups in the emerging countries, organized a field mission called the TechAfrique project to identify and list technology initiatives, start-ups, Fablabs projects, and other co-working places of tech creativity in Francophone Africa and Kenya.
Meet Peter Owiti, coffee shop entrepreneur in Nairobi, Kenya:
The story of Peter Owiti, the brains behind Pete’s Coffee shop, speaks volumes of the great deal of effort that is spent when setting up a successful business. In the brief video below, Pete, who is a father of three, talks to Kuza Biashara about the challenges he encountered when he set up shop in 2004.
Peter resigned from a well-paying office job and, left with nothing other than his lifetime savings that amounted to Ksh500,000 ($6,000), he resolved to tread a path he was barely familiar with. Today, his business is valued at Ksh5,000,000 ($60,000). This admirable growth was recorded despite the scourge of Kenya’s Post Election Violence (PEV) in 2007/2008 which threatened to break his sequence of success.
Kenyan blogger James Wamathai shares a list of top 30 Kenyan blogs:
According to Alexa, the following are the top 30 Kenyan blogs.
As with the list I did in February, it is dominated by gossip, entertainment and lifestyle blogs. One notable entrant to the list is benkiruthi.com which is the only photography blog on the list.
Kenyan blogger James Murua lists 10 African literature rich blogs:
So you want to keep abreast of what’s happening in the African literature space. Want to get news and reviews from the books written by and about African experience? Try these ones listed in alphabetical order;
1. Authors in Africa
This blog focuses on bloggers in the African continent without a focus on mainly writers from all over Sub Saharan Africa. The site gives reviews of books as well as interviews with authors, a section dedicated to poets and essayists, as well as book synopsis and short stories. The site is regularly updated.
2. Bookshy: An Africa book lover
This blog is managed by a London based book lover. The book contains news from the African literature scene as well as reviewed by the blogger. With over seventy reviews of some of the best books from the continent this is an important space to keep up with our scene. I especially like the “meet” section where the blogger interviews some really cool writers. The blog is updated every week or so.
3. Books Live
This is probably the most well managed blog out there for Afro lit. With reviews coming regularly as well as the keeping track of what your favourite authors are up to or what is being written about them this might be THE site to keep visiting. Based in South Africa, the blog is rich in content from the writers from Africa’s most southern most country but it also keeps you abreast of many from other parts. There is new content on this site daily. #Win
Gigwapi, an online event listing service, has launched a cashless payment system and social media sharing card. The card, Gigwapi card, will be used to pay for tickets and goods at events:
The card holds your personal information and can automatically integrate to your social media profile. This provides a way to share your current physical engagements like check in, upload event pictures and messages to your follower on social media. All this is done by just tapping on designated kiosks – scan points – at an event.
Messages shared via the Gigwapi card will act as personal endorsements resulting in event organizers and brand sponsors getting advertising. It stands to make the brands talked about in the messages credible and relevant.
“If a kiosk is configured for check-in, once the card is tapped then it will automatically update the user’s Facebook page saying they have checked in at the event. If an event’s sponsor once to share or send a message online, once the card gets tapped the generated message will be shared through the card users page, and on this we are also working on ways to share revenue with the user.” says Kinyanjui Njonde, Co-founder of Gigwapi.
2,715 schools in Nairobi, Kenya will soon be connected with free internet:
Wanachi Group has signed a $3 million (approx. 270m) deal with the Nairobi county, to connect 2,715 schools in Nairobi with internet.
The project was launched today and by June this year (yes, in 3 months), the pilot of 245 schools is expected to be done. After that the project will be evaluated and the second phase rolled out in three to five years.
“In addition to the free Internet, Wananchi will provide each school with a digital set top box for connection to a television for use in delivery of audio content to students. Pre-primary kindergartens will be equipped with a digital set top box and a small television,” said the release from Wananchi.