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Business, Hattie, Industry diversity, Trip to Kenya

Turkish Cypriot, Hatice Hasan MBE involved in new business to raise reputation of young plumbers in Kenya

Women plumbers are just 1 in every 100 plumbers in UK, just one of them has been awarded an MBE. That woman plumber, who proudly identifies as Turkish Cypriot, seems to have found a way to get more than the usual seven days out of every week because as well as inspiring the plumbers and women of Britain, she is transforming the reputation of plumbers in Kenya.

Hattie Hasan received the Installer Merit award for Promoting Diversity and the Role of Women in the Heating and Plumbing Industry

Hattie Hasan received the Installer Merit award for Promoting Diversity and the Role of Women in the Heating and Plumbing Industry in May 2019. She has now been granted an MBE in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours List 2020

Hatice (Hattie) Hasan retrained as a plumber in 1990 when her teaching career became too restricting. But having begun training, she was unable to find anyone who’d employ a woman plumber. Hasan didn’t let that stop her, she simply employed herself and ‘day released’ herself to college for the four years it took to qualify.

After working very successfully as a solo plumber, delighting customers in her home town and further afield, she discovered that women plumbers weren’t finding it any easier to get the jobs they needed to qualify than she had.

Several years passed with her eventually developing a business incubator service to enable other women plumbers to run their own successful businesses. This became Stopcocks Women Plumbers and remains the only national company of women plumbers anywhere in the world.

In 2015 Dr Karambu Ringera, a friend in Kenya, asked Hasan to come to the Community Home she runs in Meru county and build a rainwater harvesting system. Hattie was delighted to oblige and when she did so, she trained members of the community in the quicker, cheaper system she’d developed while she was there, which used waste rocks and wire baskets to raise the water tanks to the necessary height.

Jiku Kiguma, Hattie Hasan MBE,  Nancy Muthoni (Presenter of The Property Show with Nancy) and Mica May
Jiku Kaguma, Hattie Hasan MBE, Nancy Muthoni (Presenter of The Property Show with Nancy) and Mica May in Nairobi November 2019

In 2017 a London dwelling Kenyan, Jiku Kaguma, found the blogs written about this and realised Hattie and Stopcocks were the ideal partners for her radical plan to completely transform the reputation of plumbers in Kenya. After two years of planning together, Jiku returned to Nairobi to live, and shortly after, Hasan and business partner Mica May joined her to start iFundi.

IFundi is a new, socially responsible business with a high customer service ethos, based in Nairobi. Kaguma plans that it will revolutionise the reputation of plumbers in Kenya and is using the expertise of MBE Hattie Hasan to do so.

More trips to Nairobi are planned in the near future where Hasan will mentor newly trained Kenyan plumbers in the technicalities of her perfect plumbing skills and excellent customer service.

The second group of iFundi plumbers with Hattie Hasan MBE, Jiku Kiguma and Mica May

The second group of iFundi plumbers in Kenya with Hattie Hasan MBE, Jiku Kiguma and Mica May

One of the groups of plumbers who will be supported by Hattie Hasan MBE and work for iFundi in Nairobi

One of the groups of plumbers in Kenya who will be supported by Hattie Hasan MBE and work for iFundi in Nairobi

 

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