Kenya Road Runner Sells Socks in Miaoli for Income|沒路跑活動沒收入 在台肯亞好手賣襪謀生


Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all running events across the country were canceled and a foreign student from Kenya, who depended on road running cash prizes to pay for his living expenses, was left without any income and had to resort to selling socks to earn a living.


Speaking fluent Chinese, this foreign street vendor is selling socks at a park. His selling skills and presentations have paid off.

(3 for NT$100)3 for NT$100. (Is it the same price for long socks and short socks?)Yes, it's the same price.

This is Muli Thomas from Kenya, who has been in Taiwan to study Chinese at the Miaoli National United University for 2 years. He said the money is hard to come by. He used to be an excellent road runner and has won top prizes at several running events, including the France half-marathon in 2006 and the Kenya marathon in 2007. He even won first place at the Sun Moon Lake Marathon and the Shen Gang Marathon in 2019. However, running events have been cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak this year.

I plan to help my family once I get back to Kenya. But right now there is no running competition, therefore I need to think of other ways to help them.

The cancellation of running competitions has deprived Thomas of his only source of income; furthermore, because of the border control that has been put in place in order to contain the spread of COVID-19, Thomas can't return to Kenya either. He hopes by selling these socks made in Taiwan, he could be more connected to Taiwan and the income could make his life easier.

I just happened to be here and I can also help out a foreign friend.

His application for a working visa depends on if any companies in Taiwan is willing to hire him and assist him in the visa application process.

According to regulations, foreign students must have a student visa in order to study Chinese in Taiwan. Currently, classes have ended for Thomas and his visa is being extended to July due to the pandemic. The University said it will refer Thomas to related job opportunities and will seek assistance from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs if needed.



公園的小攤子放著好幾雙襪子,而擺攤的這位外籍人士,說著一口流利的中文,靠著自己介紹推銷,終於賣出好幾雙。

肯亞路跑好手 Thomas表示:「(三雙100喔?) 三雙100元!(長的、短的,都一樣嗎?) 都一樣。」

手上的鈔票得來不易,這位來自肯亞的托瑪士說,來台灣兩年多,在苗栗聯合大學學習中文,也愛上台灣。原本就是路跑好手的他,在多項賽事拿下好成績,包括2006年的法國半馬,2007年的肯亞全馬都拿下好成績,而2019年分別在日月潭馬和神岡馬兩項比賽,都拿下冠軍。
但今年受到疫情影響,無法參加比賽。

肯亞路跑好手 Thomas表示:「我打算回國以後,要去幫助他們(我家人)。但現在沒有比賽,所以我覺得,不可以(沒有能力)幫助。」

沒有比賽就沒有收入,讓他生活陷入困難,加上因為航班限制,也無法回國。他說比賽時都穿著台灣的襪子,他說希望藉著台灣的產品,串起更多跟台灣感情,也讓生活可以好過點。

附近民眾表示:「剛好啦!也可以幫助外國朋友。」

苗栗聯合大學副校長 張良漢表示:「至於他的工作簽證,就要看哪個地方,有人願意請他,幫他辦理 (工作)簽證相關事宜。」

根據規定,外籍人士在台灣學習中文,必須要有研習中文簽證,目前托瑪士的課程已經結束,但簽證因疫情延到七月,還在有效期限,聯合大學表示,若有相關的工作機會將會給予建議,必要時也可循管道,請外交部協助。

專題|全台敬老金大調查