A few days ago, I had promised to share a lesson on how to survive the heatwave as maids. Somehow, I got busy and kept postponing the lesson until this morning.Zimbabwe woke up to a viral social message about how a 4-year-old died due to a heat stroke. What caught my attention was how the maid received the child from school and could not recognize the signs and symptoms of a heat stroke. Probably, the school also had not and I wonder what the mother is going through. Very sad indeed. From this, we clearly see the important role played by maids in our lives and that of our children. From this, I also realized how important these lessons are. So today, as promised, I will share tips on how to manage the heat as a maid.


Here is what you can do for yourself in this heat

.-Wear light clothes that are loose-fitting and avoid dark colours that absorb heat. For those wearing uniforms, switch to cotton uniforms and avoid other clothes underneath the uniform.

-Always wear a sun hat outside or use an umbrella for outdoor errands like shopping.

-When indoors, wear open shoes or simply walk barefoot on the floor.

-Do heavy work like laundry early in the morning and between 11am and 3pm, stick to light duties.

-Reserve all ironing for the night.

-Use cold water when washing dishes

.-Have a cool bath and regularly soak your wrists in cold water.

-Wipe your face with a wet face towel regularly during the day.

-Stay hydrated and keep a bottle of drinking water with you as you work.

-After work, soak your feet in cold water and after that, keep them elevated.

-Avoid standing for long hours and rest in between work.


-Contrary to popular belief, keep blinds and curtain drawn as they block direct sunlight.

-Keep windows and doors open but remember to close them again at night despite the temptation to sleep with the windows open.

-Place a bowl of ice in front of the fan for cooler air.

-Avoid meat dishes and prepare smaller but frequent meals.

-Prepare more of salads, fruit and vegetables.-Keep the refrigerator stocked with cold water.

-Avoid reheating foods or keeping leftovers, cook whats enough.

-Keep food fresh and refrigerated.


Kids need extra care as their bodies do not hydrate as adults do. Also, their parents will not be there hence, it is your duty to ensure that the kids are ok.

-Avoid dressing them heavily even as they go to school. Ditch the jersey or tracksuit as it will also be misplaced at school.

-Always ensure they have their sunhat on as they leave for school.

-After school, give them a cool bath and change them into very light summer clothes and feed them a small light meal.

-Ensure that they drink water regularly, since most do not like water, serve ‘coloured’ water , juice and fruits.

-Apply sunscreen if they use one, with Sunscreen Protector Factor (SPF) of 30 and more.

-Avoid outdoor activities, and if they are playing outside, ensure it is under a shade and that they have their sunhat.

-Monitor them as they swim or play in the water.


They also need close monitoring as their bodies also struggle to regulate heat.

-Keep them well hydrated by ensuring they have a constant supply of fluids.

-Ensure that they stay in the shade or cool place always.-Ensure that they wear light clothes.

-Give them a cold wet face towel.-Soak their feet in cold water regularly.

-Allow them to nap directly on the floor when its hottest.


Check for these signs on you or others.

– Throbbing headache-Dizziness or lightheadedness.

-Lack of sweat despite the heat.

-Hot or dry skin.

-Muscle weakness or cramp.


-Nausea or vomiting.

-Rapid heartbeat.

-Rapid shallow breathing,



When someone has a heat stroke,

-Firstly call for help, that is, 911, parents, neighbours or the nearest help possible.


-Fan over the person.

-Sponge the skin with a cold wet towel.

NB avoid using ice packs unless if the heatstroke was due to heavy exercise.
Stay safe!