I am a mother, wife, daughter and sister, in my community this means supporting other people outside of my immediate family. We are currently facing one of the greatest challenge we have to endure and overcome.
Due to the COVID pandemic we have been forced to change the way we do life. We have had to look at how we communicate, travel as well as how we do business. Here in Africa and most importantly Zimbabwe we have women as the majority of the small businesses or informal sector. What this means is that it is mostly women who own small open markets to sale clothes or food. It is mostly women who own informal grocery shops popularly known as "Tuck shops". Due to restricted movements and the closing of borders most women have not been able to generate income. There are no resources to support such business as my government is failing to cope on a normal day not to talk about this time of crisis. I started to look at other options for employment that could help us take care of our families and still maintaining social distancing.
I was excited to find out that there are now more online jobs or work from home jobs. As I went through them I came to a realization that there are not many jobs available for Africans and more so for Zimbabweans. Economic empowerment will go a long way towards combating the spreading COVID and managing a life after the pandemic. I found out that very few women from my research knew how to use their phones outside of chatting online, for those who had phones they do not always have access to internet as it requires that a person must have credit in their phone. They greatly reduces the chances of starting an online business. Zimbabwe is currently under economic sanctions meant to force change on the Zimbabwean government but it is the Ordinary citizen that suffers like in any other country.
I realise that I have to create an awareness for online jobs/business. This requires me to know legitimate site and those that are fake, this requires me to create, develop or utilize a system that is easily accessible to almost every person in my country (looking at affordability and accessibility) this means training and coaching on the use of online platforms. A huge gap exist that requires to be covered as the income of the family greatly impacts its wellness.
The global economy has shifted and it is important that my country women shit with it. There is need to establish new sources of income, this means learning new life skills. I can use ideas and suggestions. Currently i have been been contacting companies recruiting and i found out that there more an issue of policies that need to be changed, it means I have to create an environment or platform that enables me to communicate with the policy makers. My worry is that though it is a starting point, families will be starving. is a lot of work that needs to be one. if you have done something similar, i can use some pointers.
We need to look at sustainable development, maybe a quick fix that we can develop into a long term development goal.