“One day, we’re going to be rich,” Wanga said to his friend. “We’re going to drive a big car like that one.” he pointed as a white Prado drove passed them. The two grew up as orphans in a children’s home until they reached 16 when they both left the home to venture out on their own. Life at the orphanage was not a bed of roses and for an ambitious kid like Wanga, he knew he wouldn’t be able to achieve his dreams if he stayed there.
So, one night, he organized an escape with his friend – someone he regarded as his brother. The escape was easier than he thought. However, life outside the orphanage was not. They slept on the streets for weeks before Wanga met someone who organized work for them.
“You always say that but look at us. We can barely afford to clothe ourselves.” His friend replied.
“Just believe me. We’ll make it.” he encouraged him and they went on their work as construction workers.
The little money they made could afford them a roof over their heads and food to get them through the day. That was just about it. However, Wanga still kept hope that their lives would be much better than it was.
Despite dropping out of school at 16, Wanga was quite intelligent and he always scored good marks in exams. He would read anything he came across and was quick to understand how things worked. Due to his intelligence, the foreman took a liking to him and made him in charge of the other workers.
“How are the workers today?” the foreman asked him.
“And work? Do we need to buy anything?”
“Yes, we’re running out of cement.”
“Okay. I’ll make an order and have them deliver it here then you’ll receive it. You know how to do it, right?”
He went back to his station with a spring in his step. His colleagues admired him and listened to him when he talked. He looked around and took in the moment. This was the first time he had been charged with something as big as receiving supplies. It was usually the foreman who accompanied the suppliers and brought everything to the site. He stood on a raised surface where he could see the bags of cement.
It was a small responsibility but he was proud of himself, nonetheless. The two orphans were one of the newest recruits at the construction site but the foreman had already seen his potential. He knew that small moments like those were the stepping stone to his future so he gave his all.
The following day, he met the supplier bright and early at the hardware shop. They loaded the cement in the back of the pickup truck and drove to the site. There, they were met by Wanga’s friend who let them in and helped them unload. Any doubt that the suppliers had about Wanga soon went away. After seeing how organized he was,
“You know Daniel told us that we had nothing to worry about. I believe him now.” The owner of the hardware shop said. “Good work, young man.”
“If you keep at it, you’re going to be successful.”
These words were the confirmation he needed to stay focused. The foreman gave him a promotion which meant that he earned a bit more money than before. He started saving the extra cash and after two years of toiling, he had saved enough to get a loan and start a business.
His friend was still by his side. Despite his scepticism, he still supported Wanga’s dream and even took care of their bills when business wasn’t doing too good. There were many times when the business almost went under and took everyone involved with it. However, the two orphans had learned how to survive during hard times and wouldn’t let small hurdles destroy their hard work.
Then, he got a call from his former foreman who hadn’t spoken to in months.
“Mr. Daniel.” He answered enthusiastically.
“Yes, my friend. I heard you started a hardware business.”
“How are things?”
“Good. But business is slow right now.”
“Well, good news. I need a huge supply of material for a government school project and I know you can do it.”
“Of course, I can.”
As always, he delivered everything as promised to the delight of the foreman. His reputation as a trustworthy and meticulous person spread around like a wildfire and before he knew it, he was supplying the government with construction material. His friend was sold on his dream and together they built the empire. Everything he had promised him came to life. They both bought mint Toyota Prados, built their dream homes, and could afford to give their families a luxurious life.
Though money was never the motivation for the two orphans, it felt good to be able to afford anything they wanted. They became an inspiration to the other children at the orphanage and even sponsored some of them to further their education.
Now, when they visited the children’s home, the other orphans pointed at their cars and say to their friends, “One day, we’re going to drive a big car like that one.”
Wanga overheard a group of children talking and smiled to himself as they praised him. After listening for some time, he joined the group and offered them some advice.
“Being successful isn’t easy and it’s even harder for us since we’re orphans so don’t waste your time feeling bad about your situation. Instead, use the hardships you’ve been through to your advantage. This is what will help you survive out in the world and don’t forget the friends you have here at the orphanage. These are your family and they’ll help you when times are hard.”
Wanga hadn’t noticed that everyone had gathered around to listen to him. He looked around and saw the small children all looking at him as if they were in a trance. The director then prompted them to go back to their classes which they obeyed.
“Thank you so much for coming by and we’re all so proud of you.”
“Thank you too for raising me.”
“About that,” the director said, “I’ll need Ksh 2,000 for the fence you cut to escape from the home.” She joked and they all burst into laughter.
“I’ll fix that and anything else you need.” He answered. “I’m just a phone call away.”
From A School Dropout To A Big Screen Actress
I Lost My Childhood But Gained A Family
The Streets I Call Home