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Outwitting Bullies and Petty Thieves like a Pro



It’s a mystery, how the world works. It’s riddled with with fits and coughs, pauses and random collisions. Either way, life offers no apologies! And, there’s no other time that reality hits harder – than your first day in high school.

Chances are you grew up adored, and spoilt. Home is kind. You are a demi-god, and your word is law. Your folks run the length of the earth, scrounging like chicken in the yard – to make you comfortable.

Well, high school has no qualms bursting that bubble. Reality is: You are just a minion, in the grand scheme of life.

Samuel’s tales in high school makes for an interesting read.

Sam had got a week’s worth of pep talks from his elder brother. He’d (the bro) finished his O-levels the previous year, same school he’s joining. He’d been quite popular – and often starred for the school’s basketball team. Sam had huge shoes to fill!

They’d left for school – laden with an heavy, freshly-painted metallic box. His brother had picked a cigarette box, partially opened. He’d tapped on the top, and a cigarette had popped out.

He’d looked at Sam, and in an adult’s tone, said: Don’t be like this cigarette, Sam. The cigarette that pops out, get’s lit.

So, Sam had joined high school as a meek, silent boy. Tried to keep his head down. All through checking in, the older boys kept making faces at the newbies. Towards evening, his brother had introduced him to an old friend, Jillo – as his godfather.

Jillo, his godfather – had escorted Sam to Uhuru House. “This will be your home. For the next four years.” He’d told him. Uhuru House was a fresher’s dormitory – Jillo, in his last year – lived two blocks further.

No one had served Sam with the ‘High School Godfather’ memo. The Do’s and Don’t’s. It didn’t mean that one is immune to the bullying. No, it meant your bullying is localised – to one bully.

And, it turned out Jillo, Sam’s godfather, was the meanest. History is proof: The meanest dictators, are also the most creative.

First off, Jillo was a huge guy. Yet, he found use for a pair of new socks – from Sam’s box. He’d also make new laws. He was quick to declare Sam’s dormitory as unsafe – they’d need to find a secure place for Sam’s shopping. Jillo’s mother had spoilt him rotten with extra shopping – margarine, sugar, assorted juices and biscuits.

Jillo saw it as loot. He’d hauled it all to his cubicle. The seniors had cubicles. It didn’t end there.

Sam had to wait on him, like a servant. He’d clean his uniform – especially when mocks came around. The school had a lot of mocks. The freshers would also act as ‘human alarm clocks’. This, for Sam, meant waking up a few minutes to 2am – trudge three blocks down in the dark. He’d tip toe into the senior’s block, spot Jillo’s cubicle and shake him awake!

To some extent, that would be acceptable. Blame it on tradition. But, to make it worse for worse, he had to extra-nourish his godfather! He had to treat him at the school’s canteen – bread and cakes – on a daily basis.

And this was only a section of his woes. The road to the canteen was narrower than the proverbial path to heaven. Sam was often robbed, literally.

He’d inherited alot of beef, thanks to his elder, basketballer brother. Boys his brother had bullied, would gang up and steal his money.

By the third week, Sam was broke. All the gift tokens he’d received from relatives – gone. He’d confided to Jillo, on his blinking financial reserves. No respite.

The conniving thug had later produced a mobile handset, and asked him to call his father. Then, his aunt, and his neighbor. They had all sent money to Jillo’s number. Sam didn’t see a cent of it. Luckily, that got the bully’s claws off his back for a few weeks.

As they approached mid term, Jillo would continualy remind him to ‘come back loaded’, else it won’t be business as usual. Indeed, Sam knew it wouldn’t be business as usual. He’d grown wiser, and hardier.

He had to beat the bully at his own game.

Over midterm, he gets news that his elder brother had landed an internship with Co-op Bank – as a customer relations agent. He’d introduced Sam to Co-op Prepaid Card.

The Co-op Prepaid Card is a new revolutionary cashless way to escape the perils of handling hard cash, and it has loads of advantages – especially for students.

It’s a Visa Card which you load with money and give your child to buy things from the school canteen. Also, it’s comes free of any charges!

One doesn’t need a Co-op Bank account.

In case a student needs cash e.g. for bus fare on closing day, or, say, a school’s trip – they can withdraw cash at the school, or any Co-op Bank ATM outside the school.

A parent easily monitors use of the card by getting free mini statements at any Co-op Bank branch, Co-op ATM or Co-op Kwa Jirani agent points.

A parent can load the card from anywhere, anytime conveniently from Mpesa paybill 400200, at any Co-op Kwa Jirani, or transfer from any local bank account using Pesalink.

Besides, a Co-op Pre-paid card helps a parent monitor spending habits of their children, which avails a starting point to teach effective money management skills.

Make a visit to the nearest Co-op Bank branch, or just click here.

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