Omunyokol has learnt the craft of making, selling craft shoes

When she joined Makerere University for a bachelor’s degree in Education in 2019, 22-year-old Lydia Omunyokol thought of doing something beside her studies and the hunt landed her in a craft shop in Wandegeya.

“I used my pocket money to buy four pairs of craft shoes at shs13000 per pair. I later sold each pair at shs20,000 and I realized this was good business,” the 22-year-old says of her humble beginning.

She explains that making Shs 7000 on each of the four pairs was good business that she could venture it.

“I looked no further. This was it. I had to invest in it because it was lucrative.”

As the adage goes, don’t count eggs before they hatch.

She went and bought more pairs expecting to make a kill but customers were not coming.

Many thoughts ran through her mind about the business she had chosen to do.

She says that as she went through that period, she confided in a friend who advised her to make use of her social media platforms, especially Facebook and Twitter to advertise her products.

“I took photos of the different craft shoes that I had and shared on my social media accounts. I also asked friends to share them in their different social media groups. I realized this was working out. The sales gradually went up,” she says.

As sales had gone up and she was a good customer, Omunyakol asked the shop where she used to buy the craft shoes to give them to her on credit and she pays later after selling them.

Without a second thought, the shop owner accepted the 22-year-old student’s request.

As they say, the rest is history.

Omunyakol says whereas the onset of the Coronavirus pandemic was some sort of setback, business later picked up.

Having realized her capabilities, the craft shop invited her to learn craft shoe making.

This was a golden opportunity for her to start making her own craft shoes.

“At first, I thought making the shoes was very hard but after seeing how they are made, I realized that if you have all the necessary tools, it is such an easy thing,” she says.

She explains that during the lessons she learnt that one needs electricity, leather but above all the skill and you are ready to go.

It was not too long that she learnt the art of making craft shoes.

“I can comfortably say I am skilled in making craft shoes.”

Omunyakol however explains that whereas she has skills in making craft shoes, she still buys them from the Wandegeya shop and resells them because she has no capital to buy the required machinery.

She is currently in her last year at university but still spares time to make deliveries for the craft shoes to customers.

 “I take time off my busy schedule to pick crafts over the weekend from the shop, make orders but also do deliveries. I do this on Sunday and Saturday. In case someone wants a pair and I am not available, I tell the people at the shop to make it for me and if I am not able to deliver it myself, they help me send it to the person. Then they just send my share,” Omunyakol says.

“If the order comes and I am at campus, I do the delivery myself. In most cases, I send in the orders, they make them and I pick them over the weekend.”

She says she is proud of the craft shoe making skills she has been able to acquire that even if she fails to get a job, she can easily start making craft shoes for sale. “I am happy that craft shoe selling has enabled me earn some money while at campus. I hope I can continue with it as my side business in future,” she say

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