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Wambui Collymore wades into Artcaffe’s free-coffee-for-artwork saga

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Wambui Collymore, widow of the late former Safaricom CEO, Bob Collymore, and the founder of The Art Space, an online art gallery, has weighed in on Artcaffe’s free coffee and exposure saga.

The city restaurant on Wednesday dominated social media in the country after launching an art competition in which they announced that they would reward the winners with a year supply of coffee and exposure.

Although Artcaffe has since amended the competition rules after Kenyans went ham on them on social media, Wambui, who is an accomplished artist, has gone ahead to offer some free advice to the restaurant chain on how to invest in art pro bono.

INVESTMENT NOT EXPOSURE

In Wambui’s words, art is meant to be bought and not supported.

“This is precisely why we need to stop using the words, ‘support art’. Art is made to be bought, unless the artist offers to do it for free. Refusing to buy art actually kills the industry. Exposure is refusing to buy art. We don’t need exposure. We need investment in the arts,” Wambui said.

GIVING OPPORTUNITY

After being bashed all day on social media, Artcaffe on Wednesday said that would instead offer cash incentives for the competition winners, but still insisted that the campaign is aimed at giving artists an opportunity and exposure.

READ ALSO:   Wambui discloses she suffered temporary disability after Bob’s death

“In light of the reaction to our competition launch we want to clarify: The prize is not coffee and we greatly value artists and designers. In this difficult time the purpose of this competition is to give artists and designer’s exposure and opportunity,” the restaurant tweeted.

On the score of giving opportunity, Wambui said she appreciates and applauds the fact that Artcaffe would like to be involved in the visual arts.

“It’s fantastic when corporates get involved. The investment just needs to be sustainable and actually create tangible impact,” she said.

BY NN

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Business

Behold – Installation of Elevated Water Tank at Victory Gardens Phase 3, 4 & 5 Starts in Earnest

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The much awaited day is finally here with us. The promised elevated water Tank at Victory Gardens Phase 3, 4 & 5 has kick-started in earnest.

This 40, 000 litres capacity tank will stand 15m tall and will effectively offer a round-the-clock assurance of flowing water to the residents of this top gated community in Kitengela.

Tune in to our FB Live this coming Friday (You can like this page in advance: https://www.facebook.com/georgeoptiven/) to know more about this project as we all inspect the new water tank installation progress.

Indeed, the works on this leading project is now coming to its tail-end as all other value additions are already complete. These include:

✅ Murraming
✅ Water piping
✅ Three Phase Transformers on site (Two of them)
✅ Trees planted
✅ Gardens with fruit’s
✅ Optiven Drive access Road
✅ Solar street lights (covering the whole project)
✅ Manned gates by Uniformed Security

If you want to join this ready-to-build gated community, call us Today on:
Call 0790300300
www.optiven.co.ke

READ ALSO:   Wambui Collymore reveals what her husband used to do while in self-isolation
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Soaring like an eagle & unleashing your full potential

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SOARING LIKE AN EAGLE & UNLEASHING YOUR FULL POTENTIAL are two powerful motivational books that will easily inspire you to pursue your dreams.

100% of these books’ sales proceeds are channeled into Optiven Foundation’s charitable activities that are geared towards social-economic empowerment of communities across Kenya.

You can participate in this noble cause by getting your own copy today at only Ksh1, 000 or USD 10.

Call us on: 0718 776 033
For more information, visit: www.optivenfoundation.org

READ ALSO:   I continue to love you - Wambui Collymore’s birthday message to husband
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Business

Teacher finds silver lining in the middle of pandemic

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The onset of coronavirus outbreak in Kenya in March this year brought unprecedented suffering to many people. As the crisis progressed, many people lost jobs, businesses were closed down, while some families lost loved ones to the disease. Despite the dark cloud coronavirus has brought on many levels, it has also presented a silver lining for others.

For Beldina Kirito Oluoch, an entrepreneur, the Covid-19 crisis presented an opportunity for her business to grow. When the pandemic hit the country in March, Beldina and her husband were running two successful businesses — a bakery, Beldina’s Delicacies based in Kikuyu, Kiambu County and a landscaping company, Elegant Gardens Landscapes.

When schools and public gatherings were banned in March 13, Beldina, who is also a teacher at Alliance High School saw an opportunity to concentrate on her businesses.

“ The businesses were well-established and were running independently but I suddenly found myself with so much time in my hands after schools closed,” she says. Within days of the ban on public gatherings her baking business took a hit.

“From doing over 30 birthday cakes in a week our orders in March decreased to five,” she says. With the dip in orders, Beldina could barely pay her 10 employees at the bakery in March and April and was forced to send some on unpaid leave and retain others on half pay.

READ ALSO:   I continue to love you - Wambui Collymore’s birthday message to husband

“Paying rent for the business premises also became a struggle and we had to negotiate with the landlord to offer us a grace period. Additionally, we also negotiated with micro finances that gave us loans to support our businesses to review our terms of payment,” she says.

With the effects of the pandemic getting tougher by day, Beldina and her husband had to re-strategise in order to remain afloat.

“Things were tough, but there was no time for a pity party,” she says. With many people being indoors due to movement restrictions, Beldina saw an opportunity in putting up kitchen gardens through her landscaping business.

Initially, the company had been specialising in installation of carpet grass, making lawns and laying of cabro and pavements, but had never designed kitchen gardens until the opportunity presented itself during the outbreak. The demand for kitchen gardens was so high between March and April as people were keen to grow their own vegetables. We would install up to 30 vertical gardens in a good week,” adds Beldina.

During the business hiatus at the bakery, Beldina decided to set up a YouTube Channel and teach baking skills online. The channel attracted a lot of interest, as many people who had lost jobs were keen on learning skills to help them earn an income.

READ ALSO:   Wambui discloses she suffered temporary disability after Bob’s death

Others were just keen to learn a new skill to beat boredom. At the same time, Beldina kept herself occupied by trying out different recipes in the house and sharing the outcome on a group she had created on Facebook. “From this experience I realised that I had a passion for cooking. The feedback from the group was also encouraging and an idea to set up a hotel was born in May,” she says.

Big leap of faith

With few adjustments, including offering online baking classes and making home deliveries, the baking business begun picking up in July.

The business that was initially offering basic and advanced baking training also resumed the classes in July. “We took only five students per session for classes that would initially accommodate 10. The two classes offered daily were always fully booked,” she says.

With the baking business, picking up Beldina and her husband were able to mobilise resources from friends and set up a hotel, Elegant Garden Hotel on a two acre rented space in Karen.

The hotel was opened a week ago. Beldina admits that it was such a huge risk opening a hotel, especially when similar businesses were closing down. But seeing her baking business rise up from brink of collapse encouraged her to take the big leap.

READ ALSO:   'Atleast in my dreams, we still sit across each other...' Wambui Collymore to Bob

“When I shared the idea with some friends some thought that I was crazy. But I knew that there was an opportunity because people were tired of being indoors and were interested in eating out,” she says.

Beldina says that the pandemic has taught her important lessons on life including the need to have multiple sources of income at any given time.

At the same time, Beldina says she has learnt to be adaptable and change with the times emphasising that capitalising on online platforms to promote her businesses has been helpful in keeping them afloat.

By PD.co.ke

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