Nicole Ngigi is simply phenomenal. Apart from her eight-to-five job as an office administrator, she runs an image consultancy company, Bella Borsa Consultants, where she seeks to support people or organisations going through any form of transition in order for them to feel the slightest impact during that period. On top of that, she has been, for the last seven years, living out her passion for widows, a passion that is intertwined with her strong faith in God.
Joyful service to widows…
“People often ask me why I am passionate about widows yet it’s not something I have personally experienced. But I think it’s because I grew up in a duo-parent home and I have also enjoyed the blessing of marriage. So I can only empathise with widows. It must be devastating,” explains the mother of three young girls.
Nicole says her passion for widows was birthed in church when she was moved by a sermon on the plight of widows.
“I listened to the sermon and the Bible teaching about how God asks us to take care of widows and orphans and I began reflecting on widowhood. After interacting with some of them, I realised they suffer loneliness and have a deep emotional hollow. I made up my mind in 2012 to begin an initiative that showers them with love,” offers Nicole.
Through the help of a church elder at her church, Purpose Centre off Mombasa Road, Nicole was introduced to a widow. The events that followed confirmed to her that hers was a calling.
“When I told the lady who I was and what I wanted to do, she fell into my arms and began weeping hysterically. When she had composed herself, she told me how she had travelled the previous day to one of the properties out of town, which she co-owned with her late husband, only for her to be denied access by her in-laws. She said that as she travelled back to Nairobi, she silently hoped someone would genuinely embrace her and show her some kindness. I was her answered prayer,” Nicole explains.
The first widows’ event was held in 2012 at Panari Hotel, off Mombasa Road. The afternoon event that brought together a group of 10 widows to share a meal a few days to Christmas was Nicole’s way of spreading some love and Christmas cheer to them.
“I also invited an advocate to offer the widows some legal advice, a nurse/doula to give a wellness talk, and a church minister for spiritual enrichment,” she says.
For a first time event, Nicole was happy with the turn out. She knew this would be the beginning of an amazing journey in her life.
“I was inspired to go for bigger and better things and by the time I hosted the 2014 widows event, the numbers had grown to around 30,” she says and adds that the event saw the widows being gifted with clothing and shoes to serve as a shopping experience and gift vouchers.
Today, Nicole has also connected some of the widows who are interested in business development to a small and medium-sized (SME) mentorship opportunity. Plans to host this year’s event for the widows in December are underway and Nicole says the number of those who have confirmed so far is overwhelming.
She is nonetheless glad to serve and shower love on the widows, some of whom are isolated from friends and family. Nicole believes widows are an untapped resource.
“They can be such a support system for new mum’s or even working mum’s who may need someone to supervise their nannies. I hope to eventually organise a forum where single-mums and widows can interact, learn and empower each other,” she says, emphasing that her dream of becoming the African “Oprah” has begun to unfold.
“There is so much need in the world and though realistically it is not possible to meet all needs in society, if we each did something, no matter how small it may seem to be, it would go a long way in making the world a better place,” she concludes.
If you wish to plug-in to the widows’ initiative you can contact