Living on the streets is not a walk in the park. Everyday we see scores of Kenyans forced to live in the streets owing to various circumstances.
A wise man once said that your past does not determine your future and going by how far these celebrities have come it is true.
Below is the list of celebs who once called the streets home.
1. Guardian Angel
The gospel singer, whose songs are currently topping the music charts, grew up in the streets. In past interviews, Guardian has always narrated his past sad life experience and how he ventured into music to inspire the youth.
“We happened to have gotten to a place where it was a bit hard for us to hold on because my mother had lost her job and life was just hard and me being that kajamaa who doesn’t want to look at his mother go through some stuff so that life goes on and couldn’t just watch so I decided to go my way and let my mum figure her way out. I got arrested when I was in the streets. I was on the streets and I think the President at that time said the streets should be cleared. So I was among those who were cleared from the streets.”
2. Annitah Raey
The media personality, now a mother of two, is never afraid of sharing details of her past. She’s been through a lot and just like some, her life hasn’t been a smooth path. Annita went to the streets when she was 13-years-old.
“I was so rebellious because I was raised by a very harsh mother. I started running away from home at a very tender age of 13 years and started living in the streets. I lived in the streets of Nairobi with the worst people in the society. Those were my friends. They used to treat me like I am the baby in their crew. You are the one who carried the drugs for them,” she narrated.
“Then one day I was coming in with one of them, so we are at Moi Avenue, then someone hit me from the back, nkafikiri ni mwizi and I was like, anataka nini. I fell down and became unconscious. I did not have money but anyway I had drugs with me. They dragged us towards Jevanjee. They were two guys and both were from my tribe, I understood all what they were planning for me. So they raped me and that was the worst thing in my life.”
3. MCA Tricky
Self-proclaimed Member of Chokora Assembly joined the streets at the tender age of 12, after his peers convinced him to accompany them to Nairobi in search of greener pastures without the knowledge of his parents.
“For three years, I experienced the vagaries of street life in Nairobi’s Saika estate, during which I worked as a vegetable errand boy to and from Gikomba market to survive,” he said in previous interviews.
The controversial gospel singer spent most of his time on the streets. And just like street urchins, he ate from the bins.
In an interview with Dr Ofweneke, Ringtone narrated that his mother dumped him at the doorstep of a bar in Nairobi’s Tom Mboya Street and left him at the mercy of the streets of Nairobi.
“I was thrown away in a box on the streets , my father died when I was 5, I became a street boy at the age of 7. I was brought up by my grand mother who later passed on when I was 7.
I have been employed as mtu wa mitumba. I also worked as a shoe shiner, later I went to Mombasa to be a beach boy before being taken to school by a church I am where I am today because of God’s grace. Nothing will ever make me leave him.”
His uncle later found him and sent him to the village to stay with his grandmother who later passed away, leaving him once again at the mercy of the world.
He was forced to flee to the streets where he did everything urchins do because his family had allegedly rejected him until when he was rescued by a good Samaritan.
5. Papa Dennis
The flamboyant gospel singer also tasted the rough life of the streets.
In past interviews, Papa Dennis revealed that his parents passed away when he was very young and in Class 8, leaving behind three children. With no one to support or care for them, Denno had to turn to the streets to fend for himself and his siblings.
“I’ve been through a lot, and growing up an orphan really takes a toll on you. It affected me after primary school seeing other kids go to high school while I couldn’t. It hurt a lot. So I started taking on menial jobs to survive.”
He was later rescued by Sadat Muhindi, the CEO of Maliza Umaskini foundation that helps the needy and nurtures talent. Papa Dennis celebrated his birthday yesterday.