- Citizen Digital
28-year-old Patricia Musangi's journey into welding beautiful artistic material used in construction and interior decor, is one that has seen her rise from the ashes to prove herself.
Her rise in spite of fate dealing her a cruel hand was so much that it got her featured on Citizen TV's 'Mwanamke Bomba' segment.
Catapulted into the limelight by her grit, hard work and incessant need to to achieve the impossible, she has beaten all odds along the way to secure her niche in the male-dominated industry of welding and artisanry.
During the TV interview, she recounted a painful past that left her orphaned at a tender age when she was in lower primary, resulting into a childhood of struggle.Patricia Musangi in her welding shop.Citizen Digital
She fought through to complete her primary school education amid immense financial and mental difficulties.
Due to challenges, Musangi had to discontinue her education and set out on a different path to become a house help in Nairobi.
Determined to go back to school, she saved her meagre earnings of Ksh1,500 per month with the aim of raising school fees.
After saving Ksh9000, Musangi went back to the village and enrolled at a day secondary school founded by her deceased mother's friend, where her next chapter began.
Musangi joined her peers back in school to continue from where she had left and despite the initial challenges, she had a firm resolve to attain her goal which was to get a lucrative career in future.
Through a well-wisher she seamlessly completed her high school education and managed to secure domestic employment This later financed her college education.
With the wheels of her future set in motion, she pursued short courses like computer applications and Internet technology (IT) before finally arriving to the craft that sparked passion in her, welding and artisanry.
"I came to live with my sister in Nairobi after school and gained employment earning Ksh2,400 which I saved and started an artisanry course, a field that I really liked and wanted to excel at" Musangi detailed.
After gaining experience, she advanced into automation engineering and honed her craft when she got employed at a welding site where she was mentored into venturing out on her own.
She took a loan to launch her own welding workshop, where she exponentially grew in the trade.
Musangi, now a renowned business owner with the latest equipment, has employed 11 staff at her workshop and hires casual laborers occasionally when overwhelmed with work.
"When I finished my first successful project the phone calls started streaming in, I did not anticipate such a belief from my clients, that has really helped me reach to this level." She explained.
One of her major challenges in the male dominated industry is her gender which attracted a lot of detractors fueled by the dominant stereotype that her profession is a man's job.
She affirmed the need to prove herself and her craftsmanship more, compared to her male peers in a society that deems her passion, a peculiar choice amid a myriad of other more female dominated fields.
"When I meet men out here they always ask me why I am challenging them, before they understand I can do it just like them, it takes a lot of time," Musangi bravely pointed.
She detailed that because of her prime age, many overlook her but when they decide to take a chance on her, they end up marveling at her creative designs and creations.
Her advice to the upcoming generation is to first have interest in their passion through learning foundational skills and setting achievable goals.
The 28-year-old prides in her work and the noteworthy networks she had built along the way and valued her return clients who appreciate her input in the building and construction industry, and beautiful metallic accessories.
Musangi dreams of a bright future coupled with new emerging technology to better her fabrication craft and expand her venture.A collage photo of Patricia Musangi at her shop welding.Citizen Digital
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