While many guys are thinking of bedding the hottest chic in their campus, cruising their fathers’ rides at campus, and yes leaving a Hollywood lifestyle in University, Sirjeff Denis, a third year student offering Petroleum Chemistry at University of Dar es Salaam is earning big monthly yet he keeps a low profile and modest lifestyle. Crossing paths with Jeff, one can’t believe a word I am saying.
The 22-year old raised from a humble background recalls being raised in a very challenging environment that forced him to start engaging in income-generating actitivies when he was a boy. “When I was in Standard One at Gongo la Mboto Jeshini Primary School in Ukonga in 2001, I used to catch fish at the nearest ponds for consumption at home,” “Life was a challenge because my mom – a primary school teacher – was earning a very low pay and my dad used to do some odd jobs. Sometimes he got nothing, leaving the burden of feeding the family entirely to my mom.”
How he earns it all;
Jeff started his poultry business in 2013 when he joined the university in , Jeff saved some money meant for meals and accommodation to increase capital for poultry farming. “I saved 75 per cent of the money I received for meals… by eating bread and drinking water. Many found it strange because Sh7,500 could enable me to buy me a comfortable meal but I decided not to do so. I saved Sh1 million and I pooled it into my farm and today I can proudly say I made a wise decision. My business, Jefren Agrifriend Solutions, is growing.”
Jeff sells 4,000 chickens every month, making a turnover of Sh24 million. He has also ventured into crop farming. He has 20 acres of maize and 20 acres of rice. “I grow vegetables and earn Sh900,000 every month.” Jeff has employed seven permanent workers whose salaries vary depending on their positions. He also provides seasonal jobs in his farm for about 20 people.
His entrepreneurial skills recognised;
Jeff has earned recognition on various occasions. In his own words, ” I have been invited to talk as an Inspirational speaker in within and out of the country, very recently one week ago to be exact, I was talking to IFM, CBE and DIT students at the National Museum Theatre”. With the small he has, he has done interviews with Outlook, BBc World Service London, CNN Africa, How We made It in Africa, SABC, BBC Africa, Connect Africa, Africa Successive stories, The Citizen, Mwananchi, The Guardian, many television and radio stations and yes right now CAMPUSLANE eheheheh…… He has also been named the Tanzania Student Entrepreneur of the Year by the University of Dar es Salaam’s Entreprenuership Centre. He also received an award of Sh5 million during an entrepreneurship competition run by Tanzanian business leader Reginald Mengi.
His advice to the youth;
I own me, and so whatever happens I only have myself to blame. I don’t like complaining that the government is not doing enough for me or I came from a poor background and have to live a certain way. No, I own me. I am the person who is responsible to change everything for me.”