Westgate survivor gets new salon
10 June 2015, 18:24
Nairobi - Close to 2 years after barely surviving the Westgate Mall attack, Rachel Muraya's dream of owning a salon has come true.
Muraya was among those that survived the attack on September 2013 at the upmarket mall in Westlands Nairobi, after Al Shabaab militants hit the premises where she worked on the second floor in a salon.
Despite survival, she however lost her right foot and her left one barely survived, and for the next year, could barely move without the aid of her brother Ken.
But with warrior like determination, she is now back on her feet thanks in a large part to the Kenya Red Cross Foundation and mobile service provider Safaricom.
The two organizations were touched by her plight as reported by the media and the determination to get back on her feet attracted the Red Cross chairman Abbas Gullet who sought to help Muraya.
" We were determined to help her after reading and seeing how well she had tried to come back to her normal life despite having next to nothing in terms of finances," Gullet said Wednesday at the Boma Hotel in South C Nairobi where Muraya's salon has been opened.
" We simply had to do something," he added.
Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore said that the decision to help Muraya was a no brainer.
" We are happy to help in any way we can. Her story was not just touching but it encourages us to all be determined and is a great example to all," he said.
On her part, Muraya was keen not to give her past experience any credence.
" It was a tough time for me but I survived and I thank God. I forgive those people who took away my leg and thank all those who have prayed for me and made my dream of owning a salon come true. Thank you, thank you," she said.
The salon was built at a cost of KES 1 million, which Gullet said was reached at thanks to remnants that had remained from the KES 17.5 million kitty from Kenyans as well as help from Safaricom and well wishers.
Muraya was among 126 people who survived the Westgate attack with injuries. 67 people were killed in the attacks.
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