The COVID-19 virus is not selective. Whether you live on a farm or a city, you’re susceptible to infection. Wearing a mask is one of the key ways of protecting yourself against the virus. During such a sensitive time, a washable, reusable mask can be your best friend.
We recently spoke to a loyal customer, Caitlin Koch, who lives on the farm with her family. Caitlin has purchased from Mzansi Masks three times and has even put in an order for her friends in the United Kingdom.
Caitlin took time out of her busy day to share her Mzansi Masks - and lockdown - journey with us.
Q: How have you been coping with COVID-19 in a personal capacity?
I live on a farm in KwaZulu-Natal and so we are very lucky that life is semi-normal (but not). I have a very big garden, and we’ve got a lot of space on our farm. We’ve got motorbikes and we’ve got bicycles - so we are very lucky. We’ve got a lot of space.
I’ve got two little boys, and they’ve been very entertained. They are missing their friends a lot, but other than that we’ve actually been okay.
There’s a lot of devastation out there, and a lot of suffering. I’m so aware of it and am very grateful for where I am. We do what we can in our areas.
The best way that I can describe people is “lost”. Lost and lost in suffering. People don’t know when it’s ending, what’s life going to be like… but life is now. We need to just get on with it because nothing is going to go back to how it was before. It’s going to take a while to go back there.
Q: How has work/business been affected by COVID-19 - is it business as usual?
We’re on our farm and it’s just more difficult to get spares and parts and things like that. Other than that, things are still normal. We do a lot of vegetables so in terms of food supply we haven’t stopped with that. We’ve been very busy with that.
And then we do sugar cane as well, and that goes straight to the mill and so far they’ve all been fine. I know that they’re very conscious of getting a case in one of the mills and so they’ve been very stringent with their hygiene because they obviously have lots of different shifts happening all of the time at the mills.
My personal business is import and export and so it has been very tricky. I deal with a lot of agricultural products and anything that people need - such as gearboxes - and at the moment I bring in a whole shipment of thermometers. It’s coming, but it’s just slow.
Q: What measures have you taken to ensure safety for yourself, your employees/colleagues, and your family?
We’ve got knapsacks that we spray down the equipment with. Everyone gets sanitized in the morning when they arrive. Everyone has two masks each. Some people have plastic visors if it’s not feasible for them to wear a mask all day. If people are within two meters of each other, then they have to have a mask.
If they are further apart, like some of our cane cutters, then we don’t make them wear masks because they are close to 180 meters away from each other. But as soon as you come into contact with someone you need to put your mask on and sanitize.
Q: How have you enjoyed your Mzansi Masks?
I really love our Mzansi Masks. They are great. They’re soft on the ears and they don’t pull. My kids love them. I’ve got a favourite few. I love that you can wear sunglasses with them without misting up!
Q: What is the first thing that you will do once lockdown is over?
The first thing I’m going to do when this lockdown is over is going to the beach. I cannot wait to go to the beach for the day. Build sandcastles and swim in the sea. We’re about an hour inland from the beach and you can’t see it, but if you drive a little way you can see it on the horizon.
I’m desperate to go - and so are my kids.
But on top of that, I’m just ready to hug everyone I see. I’m done with elbow-fives - they are not doing the trick anymore.
Get your Mzansi Mask
Take your pick from our collection online. We stock a variety of different colours and patterns, perfect for every taste. We’re currently offering a special discount of 25% on all our masks to help support mask-wearing and get our Mzansi Masks out there as widely as possible.
We dispatch the next day and deliver within 2 days in Cape Town and 2-5 days countrywide, excluding weekends. Tag us in your pictures - we love seeing Mzansi Masks in action.