‘Driving is my passion’ – Sanergy teammate James Kariuki

Last year in November, teammate James Kariuki, whose friends call him “Jaymo,” celebrated his second anniversary in the transportation department here at Sanergy. As a driver, James plays a crucial role in the safe removal of waste from the community.

James has loved cars since he was a young boy. He shares how his passion has turned into a rewarding career.

James has been a driver at Sanergy since November 2013.

How long have you been a driver?

I have been a driver for the last six years. After completing high school in 2008, I learned to drive at a local driving institute in my hometown of Nyahururu. Soon after graduating from the driving course, I moved to Nairobi to find work.

How did you learn about Sanergy?

My friend would occasionally recommend my transport services to the Sanergy team. He notified me when a vacancy opened up, and that’s when I joined the team.

What is your typical day at Sanergy like?

There are two waste collection routes; one that collects waste within the Mukuru community and the other that oversees collection in new areas such as Mathare. In shifts with my other teammates, I operate on both routes. All of the waste is transferred to our processing site in Kinanie.

My day begins at 5:00 am when I leave the house. I spend most of the day behind the wheel transporting waste from the various Fresh Life Toilets to the waste transfer center and finally to Sanergy’s waste processing plant in Kinanie. My day ends at 5:30pm.

In your years of working at Sanergy, what changes have you been most impressed by?

There has been immense growth! We began with one vehicle, and now we have trucks that can easily transport all the waste to the processing site. We have also grown from removing and transporting 1.5 tons of waste every day to 10 tons of waste every day. Our team has also expanded from two drivers to a total of four drivers.

Our waste collection process is also much easier and less time consuming. Initially, we did not have clearly mapped out routes. Today, the mapping has made it easier for our team to have specific collection points. This has saved us a lot of time.

How have you grown professionally during your time at Sanergy?

This being my first formal job, I have learnt to communicate effectively in an organizational setting, which has really boosted my confidence.

I have also learnt how to manage my time! The success of our team is based on adhering to strict timing; this helps to avoid minimal disruptions in the operations of the Fresh Life network.

Along with a team of other drivers, James provides transportation services to Sanergy’s collection routes on a daily basis.

What inspires you to perform well at work?

Good mentorship from my line manager Dennis Koome, who is always a phone call away, should I need his guidance or assistance while in the field. In addition, being punctual at undertaking my assignments has helped build a good relationship with my colleagues.

What do you envision for yourself in the near future?

I want to become an expert driver! I am currently taking a refresher course to keep up with my driving skills. I also look forward to marrying and starting my own family very soon!

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