Brian Kamau, a 25-year-old Kenyan man who had once excelled academically, scored an A- (minus) in the 2014 Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE), found himself in dire straits after he dropped out of university and was forced to live in a bush in Kahawa Wendani. His struggles began when he was swayed by his peers who were doing well and driving big cars through academic writing. Kamau used his savings to buy an account but it failed and he had to drop out of Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) where he had been pursuing a course in Control and Instrumentation.
He got a job at a local carwash but the cold associated with that line of work caused other health complications forcing him to stop. That was when he resorted to pushing a cart, popularly known as mkokoteni, whose income was too little to afford him a rental, forcing him to live in the bush.
The area chief, who was moved by Kamau’s story, reached out to Kamau’s parents and high school classmates, including the teachers and the principal. His high school classmates came to his rescue and gave him a place to shower and a change of clothes before they accompanied Kamau to Nanyuki, Laikipia County, to visit his father.
Laikipia East MP Mwangi Kiunjuri also vowed to support the young man getting back on his feet after undergoing mandatory counseling. However, Kamau’s parents were hesitant to rescue their son accusing him of disobedience.
The story of Brian Kamau highlights the harsh realities faced by young people who drop out of university and the importance of support and guidance from family and community. It also highlights the importance of making the right choices in life, especially when it comes to choosing friends and what to do to make ends meet.