When Davy Tsopo (35) lost his job as a restaurant cleaner at the end of March, due to restaurant closures brought by the coronavirus lockdown, he could not have foreseen how his life would take a dramatic turn for the better.
Tsopo, who had worked as a cleaner at a restaurant in Linden, Johannesburg, since 2016, didn’t know what he was going to do to support his wife and one-month-old son.
“I was very stressed, thinking of the baby and bills,” says Tsopo.
“As we had to stay at home due to lockdown regulations, I spent time watching a baking show on television. I wanted to learn more, so I started watching baking videos on YouTube,” he adds.
Tsopo bought a new oven just before lockdown, but couldn’t get an electrician to come and install it until the country moved to lockdown level four in May. “As soon as it was installed, I decided to try baking muffins. I had never baked before, and they looked like the easiest thing to bake,” says Tsopo.
He was so proud of his first muffin batch that he took a photograph and shared it as his status on WhatsApp. It wasn’t long before family, friends and neighbours started asking him if he baked them himself and how much they cost.
A little while later, a friend asked him if he could bake a cake for her. “I had never baked a cake before, so I first baked one for my family and then one for my friend. She liked it so much, she posted a photograph on Instagram, tagged me and said people could order from me,” says Tsopo.
This was the beginning of Cakey by Davy, Tsopo’s small baking business, and he created Facebook and Instagram accounts to help market his tasty treats.
“Just before Father’s Day, I put a post on social media about my cakes. I landed up with 17 orders and couldn’t bake them all in time, but people were very supportive and happy to wait.
“I am amazed by the support I have received from my Linden community. Some people have even donated ingredients and baking equipment to help me,” says Tsopo.
During the day, Tsopo takes care of his son while his wife is at work. “When she comes home at 5pm, I start baking and bake all night. I love it. I am now stress free, knowing that I can take care of my family,” says Tsopo, who hopes to grow his business.
“I am already booked days in advance, but I need a bigger oven so that I can bake more cakes,” he says.
For more information about Cakey by Davy, visit his Facebook page at www.facebook.com/CakeyByDavy