BY: Sibahle Malinga, ITWeb Senior News Journalist. 

E-hailing firm Uber South Africa has introduced two new services − GigSister and Zoie Health − to help support women earners who use the Uber and Uber Eats platforms.

According to a statement, the initiatives, launched during a recent event in Johannesburg, aim to help remove barriers that women earners often face when conducting their business via the apps.

Zoie Health is a digital women’s health and wellness clinic launched in August, to allow users to get healthcare advice from professionals. It provides virtual consultations with medical providers, group consultations and community forums.

GigSister is a community-based initiative created to connect, empower and grow female drivers on the Uber platform across Africa. Created by Women@Uber in partnership with Google, the programme consists of a series of initiatives and training sessions for women earners, to equip them with leadership tools they can use to position their businesses for success.

For the next 12 months, female earners will have access to bespoke health and wellness services made available for them and their families, says Uber.

“We are committed to helping female drivers on the platform grow, and we believe these initiatives are a great step towards empowering them so they bring the best version of themselves to their businesses and their families,” comments Mpho Mutuwa, head of communications for Uber SA.

“To help improve their earnings, we are excited to launch a new revenue stream for women drivers. For every new driver they refer to Uber in South Africa, drivers will get R1 000 once-off when their referee completes their first five trips. The programme is live for drivers, and for female couriers, the referral programme will go live in April.”

The company says the many thousands of women drivers and couriers active on the app will benefit from access to tools, information and services to support their businesses.

Uber has also partnered with L’Oréal and its global campaign to end street harassment and offer drivers tips on how to safely combat harassment.

During the launch event, Zoie Health co-founder Thato Schermer said: “We’re thrilled to be working with Uber to provide this to female drivers on their platform to improve their overall wellness.

“Alongside their work as drivers and couriers, they also take care of loved ones. With this benefit, we hope to not only help keep them safer in their daily lives, but also give them affordable and convenient healthcare that saves them time and money.”

Zoie Health services include a community of women to share health and wellness journeys, free advice from health professionals in the community, free healthcare resources for all stages of womanhood, virtual consultations with healthcare professionals and delivery of contraception.


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