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Professor Bwisa

Entreprenuership Resource Website

How to start a day care business

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Do you know Kenya€™s great Makini schools? Have you ever €œgoogled€ them up? Do you know why and how they were started? Well they were started when private schools were still a rarity in Kenya. Elementary research by Mary Okelo and her husband in the mid 1970s revealed some troubling deterioration of education starting to take place in Kenya€™s public schools. They spotted a business opportunity in this troubled situation and decided to open a small nursery school in their home. The school opened its doors in 1978 with just eight kids and was actually conceived as a side business to complement their wage employment careers. Mary was a banker and her late husband an engineer. After the death of her husband and co-director Mary has steered Makini schools from strength to strength. Of course Mary Okelo had and has a lot of passion for children.

What open and hidden entrepreneurial lessons does this teach us? That a journey of a million miles starts with a first step; that successful businesses address a felt need; that a problem can be a source of business opportunity; that successful businesses are well researched but you do not need €œrocket-science€ skills to carry out such research; that you can start a business in your own house; that you do not have to start big; that to succeed in business you need passion in it even if it may not be in your professional career path; that a business can be started on part-time basis, that family businesses work, that women are as good as men at business ...  I am sure you can identify other lessons.

Now, have you noticed that in Kenya today two-income households have become trendy? I mean households where both the husband and wife work to earn their living.  Have you noticed that for many of these families getting trusted house girls is an uphill task? There also is a growing number of divorce cases meaning that mothers who would have ordinarily stayed at home to care for their own children must seek for either wage- or self-employment to make ends meet. Deliberate single motherhood has also become fashionable. And this is happening in virtually every town in Kenya.

What business opportunities does this reveal to you?  Petty errands business? Home delivery business?  Trained house help business? €¦ There is a definite need for day care centres. And by the way social researchers have found that the most important years in a child's development are those from one to six. Thus, the exposure to the world in which the child lives; the instruction the child receives, and the habits the child forms during these years, do affect the child€™s ability to learn and properly adjust as the child progresses on through the years of formal education. Many parents of today €“ some of them better educated and more economically empowered than their own parents were - are aware of these facts and would want the best for their children. They will welcome the services of a day care centre that can do just that.

So then €“ why not start a profitable day care centre in your town? You can start it in any of the big towns in Kenya and in your own house with baby-sitting services and grow.

Take our tutorials. If tutorial one addresses the general aspects of entrepreneurship then each subsequent tutorial addresses a specific aspect of day care business. The tutorials build on each other with each carrying self assessment test(s) whose answers are carried by the subsequent tutorial. The tutorials are useful to anybody wishing to start a business €“ not just the day-care business.

We recommend that you go through the tutorials systematically although you can click on any tutorial of your choice to go through it.

Click here to download Tutorial 1: Can you make it? Are you an entrepreneur?

Last Updated ( Monday, 19 January 2009 11:23 )  


Entrepreneurship is the practice of starting new organizations or revitalizing mature organizations, particularly new businesses generally in response to identified opportunities. Entrepreneurship is often a difficult undertaking, as a vast majority of new businesses fail.

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