|mapping out businesses|
|we spent a whole day searching for bamboo|
|later that week we found it 2.5 hours away from our office. GREEN GOLD!|
|Charcoal is huge here! But there is a shortage of energy and wood so we've spent weeks looking into alternatives to wood burning and fuel|
|all aboard the ferry towards Likoni for the day|
|Photo cred: Mishi!|
|I spent a week looking into popular flavors here in Kenya, avocado is a top choice|
|sealing the popsicles|
|the finished product|
Ben and I didn't just move here to eat and play at the beach, we have jobs. There are five fellows that Ben and I work with and we are all spread out among different projects. The first project Rachael and I signed up for started with observing employment here in Mombasa. We noticed unemployment is very high and there is an informal system of finding work/employees. For example, if you need an electrician you can't just log onto the internet and find one on Angie's list. Finding labor requires talking to multiple people and establishing trust - it all about who you know. Another observation, most families hire househelp. whether it is a nanny, cook, gardener, driver, maid, or a combination; these are some of the most popular positions here in Mombasa. Since our goal here at Motiis is job creation, we came up with the idea of creating a staffing agency to establish a better vetting system and network to get more people employed.
We started researching this by talking to a variety of people: employment bureaus, people who tried setting up a staffing agency, friends of friends, house-help, hotels, security companies, established people in the community and more. After a few weeks of interviews and working through the business model canvas we concluded the business could not be established in such an informal system. The primary process of employment is word of mouth and there are enough people who are willing to work for less than minimum wage and on the flip side there are too many people (illegally) paying less than they should. I am onto the next project while Ben's water project is getting closer to its launch date. The office is buzzing with people as they brainstorm logos, advertising, creating job listings, etc. We are just waiting on a few shipments and one part of Motiis will be in business! Until then, on to the next project...