KIU, Western Campus – As soon as President Yoweri Museveni announced the closure of educational institutions on March 20 because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Linus Wamari Kirungi smelt an opportunity, one that he had in mind for long but had never got the time to explore.
He had always wanted to make flavoured popcorn, but he had never gotten the time to experiment with the different recipes he had learnt from elsewhere.
A lady he had seen in Ntinda, a suburb in Kampala, had a stall where she sold popcorn in a variety of flavours and Linus (left, in the picture), a fourth-year Pharmacy student at KIU Western Campus knew the idea would be well received in Ishaka.
So, when the national lockdown was announced, Linus decided to explore his passion. Apart from adding flavour to the popcorn, Linus decided to add honey, an innovation that has given his business the edge.
He peddles his popcorn on a bicycle, under the brand “Linus Popcorn” and sells it in packages of 500, 1,000 and 1,500 shillings.
“Sometimes, my popcorn runs out so fast and I have to rush home and prepare more because I don’t want my customers to go wanting,” Linus says.
Linus says his business helps him to pay for costs and to keep him busy, especially in the evenings when he has finished studying and has spare time on his hands.
“I usually study in the mornings and in the afternoons and evenings, I have a lot of time, in which I prepare and sell my popcorn. It helps me to take care of most of my costs,” he says.
Linus advises his fellow students and other Ugandans not to look at this lockdown period as a curse but rather to take advantage of the spare time it has provided.
“You can use the lockdown to do something that you are passionate about and you never know, With God’s blessing, it might turn out to be the turning point of your life,” Linus advises.
Picture credit: courtesy photo