By Faith Nyambeki
The longest cast member of one of the most popular sitcom in Kenya ‘The Real Househelps of Kawangware’ (TRHK) is Njambi, real name Bernice Njeri. She’s witty, tough as nails and will do anything to keep her job. In the programme, it’s only Njambi who can handle Awiti (played by Winnie Rubi), a domineering house-help. Here is the story of Bernice Njeri, an actress who struggled with depression and alcohol abuse before finding her footing.
The actress was brought up in a very strict household. Her parents did not condone any wayward behavior and she blames that for a rebellious nature later in life. Njambi was the first born in the family of two-he has a younger brother. They were brought up in Gachie. In an interview appearing on eDaily, the actress said her father still monitors her up to date. Growing up, he wouldn’t allow her to go to certain places or do certain things. With maturity she has come to realize her parents had good intentions and encourages young people to respect their parents.
She said in the same online news outlet that she regrets not listening to her parents when they told her to lead a “righteous, responsible and respectful life.” She added, “…..but now, I am a complete opposite of my past self. I nowadays even go to church – Parklands Baptist.”
The mother of two attended Hospital Hill Primary School before being transferred to White Cottage Primary School. After her KCPE, she joined Hospital Hill School. She was a naughty one in high school and got suspended ‘countless times’ for her behavior.
Her dream was to study mass communication but his dad’s dictatorial tendencies manifested themselves when he directed her to pursue law instead. Njambi’s father told her she cannot “pursue that course in my house; you are going to study law. You will do law!’ I remember him saying with finality. And so I registered for law, initially at a lower level….”the alumni of Inoorero University told Eve Magazine.
In 2012, she got pregnant while living at her parents place. Njambi had dated her baby daddy for long and thought it was the right time to start a family. The boyfriend welcomed the idea but her father went ballistic and kicked her out of their home. Surprisingly, it was Bernice’s dad who was the first to call and visit her when she gave birth. To supplement her income in the law firm she was working, the actress took another job to fend for her daughter and also quit the bottle.
Baby Daddy Drama And Husband
The actress blamed her first relationship troubles with her baby daddy to the fact that they were both ‘young and stupid’.
Speaking to Word Is in 2019, the actress said of her first failed relationship:
“We both messed up in the relationship as we were young and stupid and we didn’t have the strength to fight for us….”
She admitted they cheated on each other and fought frequently before eventually going separate ways. Njambi however mended fences with her baby daddy and they are co-parenting.
Njambi moved on with her life and got her second baby with her lover only known as baba Reign. The actress had battled depression in 2018 when she had a miscarriage.
After the miscarriage people told us “that everything happened for a reason.” They were hurting inside and this nearly destroyed their relationship.
“.. We both had unsolved issues and a lot of baggage at the time. But Lord knows how hard losing that baby was, we were not only heartbroken but our relationship got broken too.
She went on say they made stupid decision that they still regret. Matters were made worse by the fact that TRHK had taken a long break and no other opportunities were presenting themselves.
Njambi was grateful when the tide changed for the better and she got pregnant early last year. She said at the time:
“Look at God, the beginning of this year we were blessed and this time it was the right time. We were ready emotionally, physically mad even spiritually.
Having learnt from her past, Bernice asked for her father’s guidance and blessing before she ventured into acting. He gave her an okay. But it wasn’t easy as she auditioned countless times without being picked and this proved very frustrating.
She was invited by a friend to appear as an extra in the Hapa Kule show that was aired on KTN. As fate would have it, Abel Mutua was interested in a character who could play a househelp with a Kikuyu accent in the now popular TRHK show. She was picked and has never looked back.