Flora Fadzai Sibanda, Chronicle Reporter
FOR the past 21 years, Mr Galvimore Chiradza (56) has been selling his wares at the Mpilo Central Hospital gates, a place that he now calls home.
He does not see himself leaving the place anytime soon.
Galvimore says when he started selling at the gates there was only one vendor at the time — a woman who used to sell mangoes and oranges.
He says after losing his job at a local supermarket, he decided to join the woman in order to raise money to fend for his family.
Galvimore says when he started, he was selling sweet potatoes, some of them cooked.
In 2004 he decided to add drinks after seeing that a lot of people wanted cold drinks.
“In 2006 I managed to raise enough money to buy my own caravan. I now cook rice, sadza, fresh chips and a few other fast foods at the caravan. After 2005, many vendors joined us and the competition is now stiff but I am claiming my share of the market,” he says.
Galvimore says being a vendor for the past 21 years has taught him to be patient as he deals with people with different characters.
He said operating the business has been challenging as the operating environment keeps on changing.
“After the inflation years came Covid-19. It was really a tough time for me as a vendor because we were forced to close down business for some time. I did not think I would be able to recover but being a vendor has taught me to deal with setbacks,” says Galvimore.
He says he managed to send his three children and grandchildren to school using money raised from his business at Mpilo Hospital gates.
“At the moment I have a child at Nust, one in the United States and the other in South Africa who are all doing business and bettering their lives.”
Galvimore says he does not regret being a vendor and since he joined the vending business, has never had a desire to find formal employment.
“Having your own business is better than relying on being employed,” he says. — @flora_sibanda