Gaudencia moved to Kibera in 1986 after her husband died and her in-laws chased her form her matrimonial home in the village. Before she was kicked out of her home, Gaudencia used to live with her husband in a village in Kisumu together with their daughter.
In some communities in Kenya, a male child is more “treasured” that a female child, so if a woman doesn’t give birth to a male child, a husband can marry another wife so that he can get a male child. For Gaudencia’s case, she did not have a male child by the time her husband passed away; this was the main reason why her husband’s relatives chased her from her house.
Gaudencia then moved from the village in Kisumu to Kibera in Nairobi to start her life afresh with her daughter. She is currently living with her daughter who has two kids. Her daughter is ailing and is not in a position to fend for herself and her two children. This means extra hard work for Gaudencia because she has to take care of her daughter and her two grandchildren.
Before she was enrolled to be part of the Dodore Foundation, Gaudencia used to sell groceries (tomatoes, kales, onions and bananas) in Kibera slums; she says the money was not enough to cater for all her family needs. That is when she decided to start doing casual domestic work in people’s houses alongside her grocery business. This domestic work includes hand washing clothes (most people in Kenya do not have washing machines), cleaning the house and cooking. All this was to help her earn herself extra money.
Gaudencia was very happy when she started receiving the monthly unconditional grant because it became easy for her to manage her finance. She used the money strictly to pay for her rent until later when she though it was a wise idea to use the money so as to expand her groceries business.
Gaudencia started rearing chicken for sell in May 2015 as a backup plan for grocery selling because most women in the slum are now into grocery selling and the high competition makes her merchandise perish which means a loss for her. She bought five small chicken and she hopes to be selling them during the Christmas seasons at a higher price when they will be grown and on demand.
She is grateful for all the people who contribute their money in Netherlands and prays that they will be blessed.