Leav­ing a clean foot­print of suc­cess

Go! & Express - - NEWS - SIPHOKAZI VUSO

When Vuyani Mahlasela, of Mdantsane’s NU 14 started his shoe-clean­ing busi­ness, he had no idea it would be so suc­cess­ful.

Davee’s Shoe Clinic gets calls from people around East Lon­don who needs their shoes washed. Davee’s picks them up, washes them, and drops them off within 24 hours.

The 26-year-old Mahlasela said the idea was born in 2016 when he was too lazy to wash his own shoes and had to ask some­one to wash them for R10.

“I thought this could be a good idea for a busi­ness and I de­cided to start a busi­ness that could help these people – people like me,” he said.

The in­ter­nal au­dit­ing grad­u­ate, who runs the busi­ness from a one-room shack, said he had clients from Mdantsane, Ama­linda, Quigney and Bea­con Bay, as well as Gonu­bie.

“We get calls from people who need our busi­ness and we go to pick up the shoes – ei­ther for wash­ing, clean­ing, dry­ing or treat­ing the shoe.”

On av­er­age, he said they took in about 40 pairs of shoes a week and the cost of ser­vice de­pends on the ma­te­rial of the shoe.

Mahlasela also has a car wash busi­ness and has sev­eral em­ploy­ees.

“We have been busy since the busi­ness started. Some people un­der­mine wash­ing shoes but there is money com­ing in and it’s bet­ter than stay­ing at home beg­ging for money,” said Thando Ja­jini, who works with Mahlasela.

“I started this after see­ing young people roaming around the streets do­ing noth­ing and I in­tro­duced the idea to them to make money for our­selves. I don’t treat any­one as an em­ployee – I say, ‘you own part of the busi­ness be­cause you are part of the busi­ness’. This is more to em­power them to do some­thing with their lives as jobs are scarce,” Mahlasela said.

He en­cour­aged young people to fol­low their pas­sion.

“When you ap­ply for jobs and if you don’t get it, don’t get dis­cour­aged and just sit down and do noth­ing.

“Look at what you can do and if you have an idea, don’t say it wont work, try it out,” he ad­vised.

Pic­ture: SIPHOKAZI VUSO

AT YOUR SER­VICE: Vuyani Mahlasela owns Davee’s Shoe Clinic, which picks up dirty shoes, washes them, and drops them off again within 24 hours

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