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House Helps in Kenya: I Offered to Educate our House Help, but it Didn’t Go as Expected


Hi friends! So there’s a time I asked this question on my Twitter (@MummyTales):

“Would you assist your house girl to pursue her studies?”

Let me pick out one of the responses that was shared by one mom. She said:

“The time I offered to educate our house girl was right after I undergone a difficult experience; my second miscarriage. We had employed her so that she would help me with the house chores as my pregnancy grew, and so that she could also help after baby came. But now with the sad loss of my pregnancy, we really didn’t need her services anymore -as such.

Since we didn’t want to leave her ‘just like that’, we asked her if she wanted to go back to school.

She said yes.

She had not proceeded beyond primary school after she sat for her KCPE. So, based on what she informed us were her KCPE marks, we then called in a few favors and got her a place in a secondary school.

Assured of a spot in the school, we then asked her to return home (shaggz) to fetch her documents which were needed for her registration and admission into the new school.

We thought all was going well.

But apparently not.

To cut the long story short, we discovered that she had lied about her KCPE results. Her grades were not what she had told us. In disbelief, we even called KNEC to confirm.

Also, it turns out that she had lied to us that she wanted to return to school. She wasn’t interested in pursuing her studies at all.

In fact, we came to discover that she had told us other lies about so many other issues.

We just had to let her go.

What we Learned from this Experience  

What I can say is that unless someone wants to do something, you cannot force it on them. In this case, we thought it would have been a good idea for the girl to pursue her studies (because we understand the value of education) but evidently, she didn’t share the same thoughts. We weren’t on the same page.

Her going back to school was what we thought was good for her, but she didn’t want it for herself.

What I would advise moms who would wish to assist their house girls pursue an education is that the idea has to come from the girl herself. She has to want it. When the thought is from her, the desire to learn and excel will be there and she will do whatever it takes to achieve her goal. She will find time to balance between working in your home, going to school and studying. I’ve seen other house girls do this with the help of supportive employers, and it all worked well for all.” END.

You may also be interested in the story of Martha who has had the same house girl for 13 years. What has she been doing right? She shares it all in the video below:


And that is this mom’s experience. How about you? Have you had such an experience? How did that go? Or would you offer your house girl that opportunity? Share in the comments section below, we would to hear from you.




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Maryanne W. Waweru is a Kenyan mum raising her two sons in Nairobi. A journalist, Maryanne is passionate about telling stories and hopes that through her writing, her readers learn something new, feel encouraged, inspired, and appreciative of what they have in their lives. Maryanne's writing focuses on motherhood, women and lifestyle. "Telling stories is the only thing I know how to do," she says.


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