Changing the narrative through training

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In the battlefield, it is a pledge for soldiers to “leave no man behind” when in war. For a former domestic worker and cleaner, this pledge is the backbone of her skills and development initiatives.

With years of experience in the cleaning and domestic services industry, Lindiwe Shibambo has ventured into a project that will equip aspiring domestic workers and cleaners with the necessary training and skills to be successful in the industry.

Shibambo founded MAID4U in 2008 as a recruitment agency where those in need of services can find accredited and qualified employees. Since its inception, the company has grown from training 10 cleaners and 15 domestic workers and housekeepers to training and placing over 2000 employees countrywide with clients in both private households and commercial entities.

“At this stage, MAID4U has embarked on a Skills Development and Training Programme labelled Hygiene and Cleaning Training. This is a fully accredited training NQF Level 1 that assists applicants in understanding their roles and what is expected of them. The primary purpose of this qualification is to develop in all participants, the foundational, practical, and reflexive competencies required for a career in the Hygiene & Cleaning Services Industry,” Shibambo said.

As a social entrepreneur, she has been at the forefront of skills development for those in rural and underprivileged areas while advocating for access to skills and education within the informal sectors for over 10 years.

As a gateway to fighting poverty and unemployment through programmes like these, Shibambo said that there is a demand for these skills and services.

“We have seen with the recent Covid-19 pandemic the importance of cleanliness, keeping a clean space – be it a household or commercial space. Cleanliness is important to everyone’s well-being. Many disease-causing germs exist in dirty environments, such as the ones that cause diarrhoea and worm infections. This means that many diseases can be prevented through good personal hygiene, and by keeping any space clean.”

Intending to change the narrative around domestic work and cleaning, Shibambo said that low levels of education among domestic workers and cleaners and their position in society often limit their access to other job opportunities which in turn pushes them into accepting poor conditions. “I enjoy empowering those who were left with little or no hope of attaining any qualification,” she concluded.

If you are looking to train your employee or if you are looking to further your skills in the domestic and cleaning industry, contact 073-011-5462 for more information.

Gypseenia Lion
gypseenia@mahareng.co.za