As Women’s Month draws to a close, an Athlone mother is on a mission to uplift her community and empower the youth.
Chantal Leibrandt has transformed her home into a spa.
“I decided to do this because I studied beauty and cosmetology and that for me was my first love,” Chantal said.
The spa, named B’U, is a collaboration between Chantal and a high school friend, Carmen Kippie.
Chantal said she believed Athlone was the perfect location for the spa.
“I think it’s time we added value to our community. And the house is situated on Klip, where Klipfontein Road has a warm and rich history.
“I feel it’s time for us to earmark lower Klip with self-catering and other small businesses,” Leibrandt said.
The spa is not her only business - she also has an Airbnb. She plans to take in youngsters from colleges to get a feel of the industry.
“We can offer them experience in house job-shadowing, where they can get a feel of working in the industry,” she said.
Leibrandt is not only a businesswoman - she is also a mom, wife and daughter. She said her biggest cheerleaders had always been her family.
“My family were surprised when I first told them about my plans, but they were supportive and understanding. It’s not challenging for me to juggle everything - I’ve a warmth for people and everything works well,” she said.
Leibrandt said she kept her business standing firm in a man’s world, making sure she’s no “pushover”.
“I pray and meditate and do an introspection of myself, then I ask for guidance - and whatever negativity I’m faced with, I try to turn it into a positive, and that for me is rewarding.
“Sometimes you feel anxious, but you have to keep calm and focus.”
Leibrandt is seeking support from small businesses to assist her and invest. “I’d like to invite all stakeholders if they can contribute in any way. I have students and I need more equipment,” she said.