In the town of Kiambu, Kenya, Josephine Wairimu began her life as the fifth child in a family of nine.
Her early years were marked by challenges, compounded by the untimely loss of her father.
Her mother’s subsequent relocation, along with the financial strain that accompanied it, led to a series of moves, from Chania to Gilgil, before settling in Kirinyaga.
Life was tough, and Wairimu vividly recalled a poignant incident when she and her sister were sent home from school due to a mere Ksh4 shortage in fees, resulting in a month-long hiatus during which they worked in tea farms to make ends meet.
Despite the hardships, Wairimu’s tenacity remained unwavering.
Her education took her to Sing’ore Girls, an environment with its own set of challenges. Surviving on minimal funds, she persisted, steadfast in her pursuit of knowledge.
The journey, however, took a tragic turn during her high school years when she experienced a traumatic event.
The chaos in Nakuru left her stranded, and a seemingly benevolent gesture turned into a harrowing experience as she became a victim of assault.
The weight of this traumatic incident remained a closely guarded secret for years, but Wairimu’s decision to share her story later in life reflects a desire to let others who have faced similar situations know that it was not their fault.
Post-high school, Wairimu enrolled at Kenyatta University to pursue a Bachelor of Education degree. Adapting to university life was no easy feat, especially coming from an all-girls school.
Her challenges multiplied when, in her first year, she found herself pregnant. Complicating matters further, the father of her child seized an opportunity to move to the United States.
Undeterred, Wairimu pressed on, leaving her newborn at home to continue her education. Tragically, the infant did not survive.
Life in the United States beckoned when the father of her subsequent child facilitated a student visa for her.
The two lived as a family, but the relationship eventually unraveled, leaving Wairimu to navigate single motherhood.
Despite the personal upheaval, she completed her studies at a community college and secured a job, setting the stage for her remarkable ascent in the field of software engineering.
Wairimu’s trajectory soared as she landed a consulting job with the Federal Bank, eventually earning a permanent position as a software engineer.
Through dedication and hard work, she climbed the corporate ladder, becoming one of the highest-ranking employees in her department and assuming the role of a team leader.