The Sunday News
Sandisiwe Gumbo, Sunday Life Reporter
Simangele Zidja, a talented baker from Bulawayo has been recognised as the Silver winner for the best Bulawayo Rising Star of the Year at the recent National Caking Awards held in Harare, Amwinzii.
According to Zidja, her love for baking started when she was young, and she would often bake for her family. However, it was not until 2020 that she decided to take her passion to the next level and enrolled in a short course at Cynthia Johns in which she graduated in 2021.
“In 2020 I ordered a cake for my son’s birthday from one baker and it melted, it really pissed me off and I can say it motivated me to chase my passion. I went for a short course at Cynthia Johns in 2020, and in 2021 I got my certificate, that is when I started making my own cakes. When I started, I was doing it for free, for relatives and friends, when I heard there was an event I would just bake and give organisers for free. I then realised I could make cakes for business, my first client was impressed hence I turned my baking into business under the trading name ‘Zoomcakes’.”
She has faced challenges in the industry including stiff competition and delayed payments from some clients, but has however, persevered and continued to improve her skills by attending various decorating courses.
“The baking industry is challenging, for people who aspire to venture into this business, they should be determined and passionate, most of all, they should be resilient and not give up.”
Her future plan is to have her own baking shop.