Livingstone Musaala, who had to quit his education job after the school closed because the Covid-19 surge overwhelmed Uganda earlier this year, relied on coffin making to pay bills and help the community.
But at first few people welcomed his initiative. The family criticized him for taking advantage of a pandemic-fueled boom in his densely populated hometown of Bugobi, 140 km (90 miles) east of Kampala.
“Among all business ideas, do you start selling caskets as if you were hoping for the death of people?” Musara said his relatives asked him.
However, a former math teacher realized that after the demand surged due to the death of Covid-19, the casket could be manufactured and sold at a price far lower than the exorbitant prices charged by other carpenters.
“It was a difficult decision, but people now appreciate it,” Bugobi residents were no longer forced to travel long distances to find an affordable casket, telling AFP.
“At the height of the pandemic, we were active in business and sold 4-10 caskets daily,” he said, earning 150,000-450,000 shillings ($ 42-125) per casket. ..
His success added about 30 teachers to him, many of whom were dissatisfied and blunted by the ongoing closure of the school.
The casket proved to be their biggest seller, but the teacher also undertook other joinery work.
Some have already been trained in carpentry, but most have only learned at work.
Many today say they are not going back to school even if classes resume. This is even worse news for the troublesome education system of East African countries.
– “Life beyond teaching” –
Approximately 15 million students have been absent from school since the government returned in March 2020, resulting in activists fearing teenage pregnancies and a surge in child labor.
Due to lack of speaking income, some schools were permanently closed and renamed as hotels and restaurants. Others default on loans as interest accumulates, questioning their future and increasing the uncertainty faced by unemployed teachers.
“If I could choose between education and carpentry, I would choose the latter because I was ready for cash,” Godfrey Mutiava told AFP.
“I liked teaching, but I wouldn’t come back because my salary was low,” said the two fathers.
Teachers working in Bugobi’s private schools earn an average of $ 100 to $ 250 per month.
Newly built casket makers struggle to raise money to buy equipment such as electric saws, despite strong sales, and a pandemic after a surge in mortality in June and July. Now that it is beginning to ease, we are facing new challenges.
Nonetheless, even if the casket sales fall, Musara has no plans to return to her previous job and is paying attention to making furniture instead.
“Covid-19 taught me that there is a life beyond teaching me,” said the two fathers.
Ugandan teachers will become coffin makers after the school is closed
Source link Ugandan teachers will become coffin makers after the school is closed