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Gweru Today


When a Gweru woman developed a passion for home economics, little did she know it would give birth to a project that would empower unemployed members of her community and get her recognition as one of the influential cafeteria Managers in the City of progress.

In an exclusive interview, the media shy proud co-owner of a renowned Café Exqusite restaurant, Maria Sithole (52) was quick to give glory to God for their business she described as growing from strength to strength.

“I have always loved catering, baking and designing. Growing up, we had a small backyard kitchen and l and my sisters taught ourselves how to cook and by watching our parents preparing food we learnt a lot.

‘’I thank the Almighty God for it is by his grace that we are here today trailing in the foot prints of the business giant Insccor. I adopted the concept of doing what you can, with what you have and where you are. I also believe that what man can do, women can do better,’’ said the soft spoken Sithole.

The Family of God church member, Sithole also gave credit to her United Kingdom based daughter, Loveness Gavu whom she said funded the project during its initial stages in 2012.

Today she and Mrs Tendai Masiyiwa nee Gavu has established two fast-growing companies running by the name Café Exqusite, situated at number 73 3rdStreet near Budiriro College and 7th street at Olga wool premises close to Cathedral Hall in Gweru.

According to scores of clients who spoke to this publication, the restaurant offers exceptional services and high quality modern and traditional foods at affordable fees to members of her community.

“The reason why I often come with my workmates here is that the service and quality of food provided here is splendid. The company provides rather cost effective services. Workers here have high degree of customer care compared to some local restaurants,’’ said Jimmy Mutawarira from Mambo.

The duo often shares their experience and expertise with their employees for the benefit of the business.

‘’We often do customer care workshops with our employees in order for us to continue maintaining the current overwhelming clientele base.

“l got support from my daughter, Loveness Gavu currently in the United Kingdom and l enrolled at several hotel catering institutions before embarking on this project. The whole experience has changed my life. We intend to reach or surpass Innscor group of companies, like Chicken Inn and Crème inn,’’ she said.

“It was not easy. Like many other small businesses, we went through difficult economic times and our business experienced ups and downs. However, we kept rising after every setback. Through the challenges, l learnt that success is a step-by-step process and that the only sure way to fail is to give up,” Sithole said.

“My dream is to compete with Innscor group of companies and other companies in the hospitality industry and become one of the major employment creators in the province. We are on our way to achieving that and nothing will hold us back. God is great. l am sure that by next year we will be at another level in terms of growth”, she said.- ZimEye
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