Entrepreneur defies the odds to survive

SIX years ago, a physically challenged woman in a wheelchair ventured out into the streets to sell her home-made meals and pastries. At the time, she met with disapproval from people she knew. The local authorities didn’t make it any easier for her. But she didn’t give up.

Today, 55-year-old Taina Foss, nee Shaw of Nukuwatu, Lami, is an established small micro entrepreneur who reckons she is richer than most blue-collar workers. She epitomizes physical disability being a non-deterrent against one’s endeavor to succeed in life. “I didn’t want to depend on anyone. When I started, people disagreed – sitting by the curb in my wheelchair doing this,” she said as she waved her hand to the knee-high table next to her upon which one will find an array of pastries, roti parcels, fresh seasonal fruit drinks to name just a few items she sells.

“They said it didn’t look good for a disabled person to sit in public doing that. “Today, I think I make more money than those with better jobs, because on Mondays they’re at my door asking for money – my credit book is full of names.” Through her peddling, the widow and mother of four, solely supports her youngest offspring, a 15-year old fourth form student of Cathedral Secondary School. 

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