In our latest who’s who profile series, we caught up with Daniel Munyao, production and quality control manager at the Wildlife Works EPZ factory as part of our Kasigau Corridor REDD+ Project. Daniel was born in Machakos County and recalls his early life as a constant struggle for survival. He frequently went to school hungry and without shoes on his feet. At a young age, Daniel was forced to stop attending due to the high financial stress it put on his parents.
Fortunately soon after, a humanitarian organization called World Vision that had begun to form a presence in the area, was sponsoring young people to study vocational courses in a local polytechnic attached to the village’s school. Although he had no distinct career path in mind, Daniel decided to enroll in the program to study textile tailoring. Daniel remembers, “When I was in Primary School, I had a friend whose brother was a tailor, and we would spend most of the weekend at his tailoring shop. This made me fall in love with tailoring.”
Once he was through with his training, Daniel set out for Nairobi in search of employment. He started as a tailor in a local clothing factory, as well as working as a shoe mender. Eventually Daniel joined Tinga Tinga Clothing Limited where he rose in the ranks to become a senior supervisor after 10 years.
In September 2002, while reading the newspaper, Daniel came across an advertisement to become a manager at Wildlife Works EPZ clothing factory, which at the time employed less than 10 seamstresses. Due to his passion for wildlife conservation, Daniel decided to apply for the position. Eleven years later, Daniel is still an integral factor in the day-to-day running of the factory.
When asked about his future plans, Daniel has one thing to say: “I would one day love to see the words, ‘Designed by Daniel Munyao’ on a major clothing label, I would love to learn fashion design!” It is evident by the success Daniel has gained relative to his humble background that he is capable of anything he puts his mind to. Daniel attributes his career growth to patience and the ability to face challenges head-on, as well as to his friend’s brother, and mentor, with whom Daniel constantly measured his progress and growth.
Wildlife Works is the world’s leading REDD+ (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation), project development and management company with an effective approach to applying innovative market based solutions to the conservation of biodiversity. REDD+ was originated by the United Nations (UN) to help stop the destruction of the world’s forests.
Over a 15 year history Wildlife Works established a successful model that uses the emerging marketplace for REDD+ Carbon Offsets to protect threatened forests, wildlife, and communities.
The company helps local landowners in the developing world monetize their forest and biodiversity assets whether they are governments, communities, ownership groups, or private individuals.