Together with connecting customers with domestic workers as and when they need them, we are also passionate about changing attitudes in the South African domestic work industry. This is why over the next few posts we’ll be answering some of the questions a lot of people have regarding SweepSouth and SweepStars.
Part of this includes the language we use – moving away from loaded terms like “maid” and “char”, we’ve taken the approach of a fresh start with the term “SweepStar” to describe the people at the centre of what we do. We are uplifted each time we see SweepStars referred to in this way, as it represents how a positive idea can take shape and can change the language that has become deeply entrenched with negative connotations.
“Very early in the journey, we realised that SweepSouth needed to be about more than just helping people find assistance with home-cleaning.”
Aisha explains: “As we met more and more of the people on our platform, we started to understand not only the importance of creating job opportunities through the platform but of doing so in a way that respects the dignity of workers in the domestic space and allows them to dictate their own schedules.”
With more than 84% being the sole breadwinners at home, we’ve come to understand how vital this mission is!
While we’ve faced challenges along the way, we’ve made massive strides over the years.
We’ve provided tens of thousands of work opportunities to women (and men) in the previously four, now eight cities in which we operate. Of the thousands of SweepStars (our preferred term for domestic workers/housekeepers) we’ve already given work opportunities to via our platform, 71% were previously unemployed while 29% were underemployed, evidence of the real impact we’re having on creating employment.
Here at SweepSouth, we aim to create clean happy homes by providing dignified, flexible work and work opportunities at decent pay to our SweepStars and a hassle-free, reliable service that gives back time to our clients.
“Our SweepStars can dictate where and when they would like to work while unlocking the power of their smartphone so that it becomes a tool that can bring income to their families.”
SO … ARE SWEEPSTARS EMPLOYEES OF SWEEPSOUTH?
No, SweepSouth is not the employer and SweepStars are not employees.
A SweepStar is an independent contractor who has been vetted by SweepSouth and is able to make use of the SweepSouth platform in order to connect with clients looking for someone to assist with general domestic cleaning. Inspired by on-demand services like Uber, SweepSouth allows cleaners to sign in and out of our innovative platform according to their schedules and location, putting them in charge of their own earning potential.
And this takes us to the next topic … SweepStar’s earnings. In the next post in this series, we will look to answers questions around SweepStar pay.