Small random businesses you can support in the time of Corona
A list of South African businesses that need your help
Last week I tweeted out that I’d be willing to promote small businesses on the blog, for free, to try to hopefully allow more people to become aware of them during a really difficult time for freelancers and small business owners. The response was somewhat overwhelming. This is the first of MANY posts that will be running over the course of the next few weeks. Some posts will be dedicated to one business/product/brand in particular while others will be listicles. I’m going to try promote as many as I can with the platform available.
Today I’ve curated a list of random businesses and products you can support during this time. These businesses contacted me and while I’m sharing their details I do need to make it clear that I have not used many of the services so I can’t vouch for their customer delivery. However, they are small run businesses desperately effected by the spread of Corona. Tomorrow I’ll be doing a food and beverage list, Wednesday expect a fitness list and then a few special posts for businesses.
Here’s the first list of small random businesses you can support in the time of Corona:
XOXO Hair Studio – hair styling
I’ve been going to Nico at XOXO for more than 4 years. He is an incredible personal friend and an amazingly talented hairdresser. I mean have you seen how many times I’ve changed my hair? Lol. This is a service I can vouch for as it is one I use monthly. Nico runs a lovely boutique salon in Hyde Park. He employs 5 to 6 full time staff. Obviously hair dressing isn’t something on the list for people to do during social isolation, but Nico is still keeping his doors open to try ensure he can look after his staff. Right now, the majority are at home on paid leave. 2 ladies work with him in the salon and are staying with him at home. They never have more than 5 people in the salon at any time and are still offering services where they can. They are following extremely strict hygiene protocols. So an option if you feel you need a hair appointment.
Avenue English – English lessons
Avenue English is an English language school in Johannesburg. It’s been around since 2011 and helps foreigners or those who don’t have English as a first language to learn how to speak English and also how to work in English language business settings. The classes are done face to face and, as you can imagine, with the Corona outbreak the classes have emptied right out. Teachers still need to be paid. I realise now likely isn’t the time that you want to send someone for English language lessons but maybe it might be a good time to book a course for next year? Or you can utilise the online lessons function now available.
DecorLab – blinds, upholstery and interior design
DecorLab is a small husband wife operated business in Cape Town. Their daughter mailed me about their business and when I checked them out their work looked stunning. They do custom blinds, curtains and shutters. There’s also an upholstery service and custom furniture making if you need it. Obviously right now you probably don’t want people in your home measuring for blinds or moving your couch out to re-upholster. But if you’re planning to do an interior revamp soon maybe begin the consultation process now with DecorLab so you can get the ball rolling the moment our quarantine period lifts?
Complete 3D – 3D Printing and Design
Complete 3D is a 3D Printing and Design firm. They can do a host of different printing including prototyping for mechanical, architecture, robotics and automation industries as well as every day items you might want to create like a cellphone stand or just fun 3D models. You’re able to find them on Facebook. Obviously what is great about Complete 3D is that most of your interactions can happen over email and phone, so there won’t be a need for any social “real life” interactions. I have a 3D printed Batman on my bookshelf at home (not from Complete 3D) and I love it, it’s funky and different.
FigJam Computers – configuration and repair specialists
FigJam Computers is a small business operated by a gent I’ve interacted with on Twitter for years. Apostolos, also known as Tolie, has more than 17 years in IT support and has worked with a range of clients, from his neighbour needing help to large corporate companies. He started FigJam in 2012 and says it was because he saw the lack of IT skills in the private sector and “I can almost, every time, fix the other IT guy’s mistakes.” FigJam configures and installs networks, servers, PCs and printers. they also repair PCs and laptops as well as sell new, repaired and refurbished PCs and laptops. You can find out a bit more about them here.
Max Mattresses – they sell mattresses
In these COVID times, most retail and customer facing businesses are struggling. If you rely on feet through the door, it is a tough time. Max Mattresses is one of those companies that have seen foot traffic dry up but their offering is still very much in need. The store is based at the Lifestyle Centre Centurion – close to the Pick ‘n Pay. Max Mattresses sell brand names like Sealy, Cloud Nine and Rest Assured. There is also the option for free delivery. You can chat to them over the phone and online if necessary. Their website is here.
Mini Fantasy – custom 3D minis
Mini Fantasy is a rad online store that offers up custom printed miniature figurines and items to enhance your table top experience. If you’re into table top games or DnD you’ll love this store. They have hundreds of models available and are happy to custom design something for you if you’re looking for the perfect warrior for your army. They’re also able to replicate other 3D models that you might find on overseas sites. If you want to find out a bit more about Mini Fantasy you can visit their website.
The Maker Space – technology and social training space
This is such a tough one because awesome venues like The Maker Space are really suffering. The Maker Space is a small business but also a non profit company. The Space, based in Durban, supports social innovators and unemployed youth by teaching them to use technology and help to up skill young people. The biggest issue right now is that the space makes nearly half their income from events, which obviously cannot happen at the moment. There are some ways to help them though, they’re running a recycling project and have a ceramic 3D printer to try supplement income and keep the team employed. If you’d like to find out how to help and keep their doors open, check out their website.
Rebeltech – online PC store
Rebeltech is a small online PC and peripherals store operating out of Johannesburg. They stock PC parts, laptops, cables, keyboards… I could make a list but you get my drift. Basically, they’re a great online space to utilise if you need to get all your tech stuff sorted. It’s a small passionate team running the show and I’m sure it is pretty tough to keep the office safe during this time. I’ve never used the store but my Player 2 has and he loves their service. Check them out.
I’m going to end this list here as I’ll have more coming out during the course of the week. However, I don’t want to stop the conversation. If you have a small business you’d like to promote feel free to drop it in the comments. Happy to share the love with this one.
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