Being foreign and supporting family during lockdown
While the announcement of level 1 by President Cyril Ramaphosa was a sigh of relief for most, others say the damage done by the pandemic will take time to repair. Originally from Zimbabwe in Harare, Gracious Jaure says she wasn’t able to provide for her family for months.
Hairdresser and mother of two, Jaure says her life is dependent on her customers and when they had to stay indoors her life unraveled.
“I wasn’t prepared at all, throughout the lockdown I had no money for rent and food. I couldn’t send money back home, my children and mother were suffering. In level 3 I could no longer take it, I started begging customers to come and do hair so I could at least send R100 home. It was tough because from that little money we had to pay truck drivers. The rates of the apps we usually use to send money were very high,” she explained.
Pamela Matsika also from Zimbabwe said this was an eye opening experience and the most difficult way for foreign nationals to learn to have other streams of income.
“We were getting no assistance from the government like others, we were forced to close at the salon and we had no way of putting food on the table. Hairdressing is the only job I survive with but during lockdown even that didn’t come through for me and my family,” Matsika added.