Where there is a will there is a way and this is what has kept Esbon Wainaina going, a 23 year old young man from Gaitega village ,Kiharu Constituency, Murang’a county despite hurdles in attaining his aeronautical engineering dream.
We meet Esbon in his makeshift workshop and a display of prototypes awes us by the designs of the airplanes. He tells us that his flying interests can be traced back to when he was a kid and tells us how he made aeroplanes using paper and that at times he could light a fire at the back of the makeshift planes to make them fly higher and faster.
On her part, Charity Muthoni, mother to Esbon says that she noticed her son’s interest in flying from a tender age. Whenever they could slaughter chicken, Esbon would take the feathers, fix them on his shoulder and try flying as a chicken. She added that even his first composition in school he wrote about an airplane and she took interest in nurturing the talent.
Esbon takes us through his education journey where he scored a straight A after high school in 2014, then he studied Chinese language for two years before he joined aviation school in 2017 to study aeronautical engineering but its at this point that things took a different turn. His mother who was paying school fees had to leave work to attend to her sick mother meaning no source of income. Attending classes for Esbon became shaky as he would be sent out of school now and then due to lack of fees in as much at times he would sneak back in, only to be discovered and thrown out of class.
Esbon narrates to us painfully how he had to drop out of college due to the prevailing circumstances and thought how best he could keep his dream alive. He set up a workshop at home where he would borrow notes from his classmates and continued to accumulate knowledge. He ventured into making prototypes that he would sell for display, decoration and teaching aid purposes but one morning his workshop was guttered down by fire that left him shuttered.
He says despite trying severally to raise money to complete college without success and missing an internship opportunity for lack of a letter from his college, this brought him down as most of the raw materials are expensive but still kept hope alive and set up a new workshop where we met him.
He continues to amaze us by his vast knowledge in planes designs, technical bit that make them fly, types of engines that run different planes with so much zeal and eloquence. He shows us his Boeing 777 that can fly cargo or passengers, high wing that is mostly used for training purposes and SR71 jet among others.
Esbon and his mother are making an appeal to well wishers to come to their aid and any help is welcomed either in constructing a good workshop, buying raw materials but their ultimate wish is getting him back to college to complete his course. Esbon is full of positive energy and continues to mentor others in the village who flock at his workshop just to get a tip or two on planes and their mechanism.
Dr. Simon Gichuru an area resident says that the government, private sector and even individuals should come to the aid of such talents and nature them as they bring profit not only to themselves but the community and the nation at large. Dr. Simon a vet treated Esbon’s dog and in return Esbon made him a decorative plane prototype.
As we leave, Esbon makes a clarion call to the youth not to easily give up on their dreams in times of challenges because in times of trouble that is where our victory lies.