CELEBRATING THE TEAMMATE OF THE QUARTER: MEET JOSEPH OTIENO
Every quarter, the entire Sanergy team gets together to reflect on progress and celebrate teammates who have shown exemplary performance, and have gone above and beyond in their line of duty. In the first quarter of 2018, Joseph Otieno bagged the teammate of the quarter award.
Joseph who holds as diploma in Community Development from St. Paul’s University, is a bubbly soul armed with a desire to always put his best foot forward in everything he does. He is a member of the NTCO (New Technology Commercialization) team – a team that is tasked with harnessing existing and new knowledge on waste end-products, so as to support Sanergy’s commercialization efforts.
He joined the team in 2012 as a waste collection teammate, and six months later was promoted to a supervisor. In 2013, his diligence saw him join the NTCO team as a Research and Development assistant in charge of the Black Soldier Fly project. The Black Soldier Fly is a harmless waste converter that Sanergy breeds to make sustainable, protein-rich animal feed for Kenyan farmers.
There is huge demand for affordable, protein-rich animal feed in East Africa. At present, most animal feed is imported and, as a result, farmers pay significantly higher prices. In Kenya, most animal feed for livestock is produced from fishmeal, which is limited in supply.
Joseph is so passionate about his work that he sometimes works over twelve hours a day to ensure that his work is done. One of his greatest achievement is the increase in growth of the Black Soldier Fly colony by over 300%.
Any lessons he’s learnt on the way? “The day we lost a whole colony was terrible. It was tough for the entire team but it took us back to the drawing board and reinforced to us the importance of team work while in the line of duty. As a team, we have to coordinate our efforts and uphold stringent protocols to ensure that the colony thrives, every parameter counts,” he says.
Kenya’s feed millers appreciate the quality, consistency, and purity they can expect from Sanergy’s animal feed. The trials are going well with farmers seeing a 30% increase in the body weight of their animals. At Sanergy, we believe that if there is a market for end-products, we incentivize the Kenyan waste-management sector to invest in sanitation. Our animal feed is of the highest quality containing over 45% protein coupled with amino and fatty acids which promotes animal health and growth.
When he is not at work, Joseph is an ardent soccer fan, enjoys travelling, and catching up with his friends. Joseph is also proud of Sanergy’s work because of the difference it has made to the community. “Slums today are much cleaner and young people like myself can make a living out of tackling the waste problem in Nairobi’s slums,” Joseph says. Currently, Kenya’s unemployment rate stands at 40% with over 60% of this population comprising of young people.
His parting shot, “Through hard work and determination, everything is possible, only if we get to believe in ourselves!” We couldn’t agree more, congratulations Joseph!