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Martha Wanjiru: Landlady With Golden Heart On Giving Househelp Free Housing, Pays Her Children School Fees

Violet, a house manager, was going through a hard time while working for her former boss in Karen Estate, Nairobi until she met Martha Wanjiru.

Martha, a Kenyan based in Germany, shot in the limelight in December 2022 when she waived rent for tenants in her apartment.

She organized a small get together for her tenants where they ate, interacted with each other and watched the World Cup final.

It now appears that Martha also extended the same gratitude to Violet who is her house manager by educating her kids.

In this article, WoK highlights how Violet met her boss, their relationship and how Martha is helping her.

Background

Like most people who opt for informal employment, Violet was brought up in a humble background.

By the time she completed her primary school education, her dad had already retired and he had no stable source of income.

Despite excelling in her exams, she was unable to transition to secondary school due to lack of school fees, forcing her to stay home for a whole year.

“I stayed home for a year before I was sponsored by a good samaritan. I joined secondary school and studied up to Form Three when I encountered some challenges,” Violet said.

Violet explained that her uncle was sponsoring her education and it reached a point where her aunt would be sent money for school fees but she would instead pocked it.

“The situation got more challenging because I’d be sent home due to school fees almost everyday,” she said.

The house manager had no option but to drop out of school and go back to her parents house.

Moving to Nairobi

With no hopes of going back to school, Violet stayed home for a while before she decided to leave for Nairobi in search of househelp jobs.

When she got to Nairobi, she met a man whom she fell in love with and moved in with him after he promised to marry her.

“He made me a housewife… We got our firstborn and then twins, and immediately after that, life started becoming more challenging,” Violet said.

With the situation at hand, Violet started doing menial jobs such as laundry services (mama fua) but the money was not enough.

One thing led to another and she would get into fights with her husband, eventually forcing her to leave the relationship.

Violet took her children to her parents house in Vihiga and returned to Nairobi where she got her first ever job as a house help in Karen.

Unfair treatment

At the Karen household, Violet worked alongside two other women although she was in charge of the kids.

At that particular time, she was taking care of five kids including a 3-months-old infant.

However, months into the job, Violet said it reached a point where her boss started treating her unfairly and took offense whenever the infant was in distress.

“She would get to the house and when she was angry she would unleash her wrath on me. When the child would cry I’d be the one accountable,” she said.

Violet worked for her for a while before she eventually decided to quit her job and went back to her parents house.

Return to Nairobi

She stayed home but due to lack of money to support her children who had already started school, she decided to return to Nairobi.

Violet stayed at a friend’s place, although it was challenging, for a while as she looked for menial jobs to earn some income.

While going about her day-to-day activities in Rongai, she happened to work with a lady who introduced her to Martha.

When Martha flew in from Germany, Violet eventually met her and they agreed that she would be working for Martha whenever she is in Kenya.

She worked with Martha throughout her stay in Kenya and went back to doing other jobs after her departure for Germany.

It was not long before life took a toll on Violet forcing her to go back home once again.

“My friend tried to convince me to stay but at that point, the only solution was going back home because people at home know I’m working but I’m not sending them money,” she said.

While Violet was at home, Martha came back to Kenya and later looked for Violet through a mutual friend.

While Violet was seated at home wondering where she will get food for her kids, Martha called and after hearing her story, she sent her Ksh 10,000.

It was after that when she was told to travel to Nairobi the following day and met Martha who offered her a permanent job.

“She offered me a permanent job, she told me I’d be in charge of the house whether she’s around or away in Germany,” a smiling Violet said.

Martha took care of Violet’s basic needs such as food and took care of her kids school fees, and still paid her a full salary end month.

“The expenses on my kids are not deducted from my salary, she takes care of it all by herself,” Violet said.

Martha who owns residential properties also gave Violet one of her house free off charge.