Maid for each other

Maid for each other

Domestic Help

There is always a demand for domestic help, be it in house work or taking care of children and pets. The advent of technology through microwaves, washing machines and vacuum cleaners has not reduced the necessity for maids.

To cope with the demands, maids today are well-organised, informed and equipped with modern skills.

“It’s hard to deal with modern-day maids due to their pre-defined conditions. They are unwilling to work if the family is huge and constantly complain when there are guests,” says Apsare, a home-maker.

“Even the rates are fixed for every task they do. An extra Rs 500 is charged for mopping and Rs 500 more to wash the dishes. The list just goes on. They never compromise on anything,” she adds.

There are many who hire different maids for different works. Swetha, another home-maker, says, “We have three people for moping, gardening and cooking. My maids are happy as they can work in other homes.”

Many like Meera, a professional, are willing to give extra facilities like homes for their maids. She says, “It’s a privilege I offer my maid. Along with free electricity and water, we also take care of her kids’ schooling.

Comparatively, I pay her less but she is the only maid in my house. She does everything like cleaning, washing and helping in the kitchen. The main advantage is her availability round the clock.”

Bachelors too are in need of domestic help. Says Harsha, “I go to work in the morning and come back at night. My maid cleans the house and cooks dinner. Since I am alone, there is hardly any work for her but the pay is fixed. I have no complaints as I don’t have the time to do everything myself.”

The other side of the story is harsh and sometimes painful. Says Dakshaini, a maid, “It’s hard to survive in Bangalore, hence I work in eight houses.

 I begin by six in the morning and work till three. Depending on the work, I have set a time-table. It’s hard to adjust with people from eight different houses and their timing. Somehow, I am sailing through.” 

There is no dearth of websites and agencies to link people and these workers. Pramila of SS Help Providers, says, “Both customers and workers approach us through various references.

We just connect customers with their preferred domestic help for a commission. We are a great help to both of them.”

By multi-tasking, maids try to earn more and give all their comforts to their children, which they are deprived of. Usha says, “In the morning, I work as a housekeeper in a hotel and at night I cook at a household. It is tiring.

But I am sending my children to a good English school for a better future. Hence hard work on my part is essential.”

Concludes Venkatamma, a 70-year-old domestic help, “I have been working for 25 years without any personal benefit. Due to price rise, house rents have shot up to Rs 6,000 per month.

I am forced to work at five houses to earn my living. My ill-health does not permit me to overwork. I ask for a fixed sum to survive.”