Home » Kenyan Nurse Regrets Leaving the Country for the UK After Paying Sh. 114,000 Single Room Rent

Kenyan Nurse Regrets Leaving the Country for the UK After Paying Sh. 114,000 Single Room Rent

by Paul Nyongesa
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Many Kenyans have eagerly wished to move abroad, considering it a land of great opportunity where they can secure well-paying jobs compared to their earnings in Kenya.

However, this isn’t the case for Cate Maina, a Kenyan nurse residing in the United Kingdom.

Despite landing a well-paying job in the UK, she laments the high rental amount she has to pay every month, as the cost of living continues to increase daily.

Maina, who has 5 years of experience as a renal nurse, asserts that her salary fails to keep pace with the continually rising costs of living, pushing her into what she describes as a ‘hand-to-mouth’ existence

The initial allure of the UK as a global economic hub, where opportunities were expected to be plentiful, has given way to a stark reality.

Cate, like many others who embark on a similar journey, believed that financial struggles would be alleviated in a developed nation.

However, her experience paints a different picture, revealing little to no difference between the economic challenges faced in Kenya and those encountered in the UK.

“One of the reasons why I left Kenya for the UK was to make enough money to support my family. I have siblings that I educate and look up to me,” Cate wrote on her LinkedIn page.

She left behind siblings who depended on her for education and support. The dream of a substantial paycheck in the UK, however, has not materialized as she grapples with the unrelenting grip of financial constraints.

Working for the National Health Service (NHS), Cate faces the added pressure of increasing rent costs.

Living in a shared apartment, she recently received a notice of a 7% rent increase, attributing the hike to the prevailing inflation in the global economy.

Her monthly expenditure on rent alone is Sh. 114,000 (£631), a significant portion of her earnings, especially considering the modest living space she humorously describes as ‘the size of a big coffin.’

Cate’s frustration is palpable as she looks potential avenues for improvement. While considering a move to the private sector for a better salary, she is hindered by the limitations of her current work visa.

“I could reduce my NHS hours to make time for agency work but I am in the UK under a skilled worker’s visa which means I am tied by its regulations. So until I one day manage to become independent as far as my immigration status goes, I’m stuck.”

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