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.