Parenting Around the World

Name: Claris Munesu Ndoro Mashingaidze

Country: Zimbabwe

Occupation: Beauty Therapist

Parenting Around the World 2

How many children do you have?: I have a six-month-old son, and his name is Kingstone Nyati Mashingaidze.

Why did you decide to become a mom?: I decided to become a mum, because I wanted something to look forward to love when I got home after work, especially since my husband lives in the U.S.

What’s the best part about being a mom?: The best part of me being a mom is when I breastfeed my baby. I also love to come home from work and see that lovely smile on his face. That’s so relaxing.

Parenting Around the World 1

What’s the best parenting advice you ever received?: The best parenting advice is to teach our kids to put God first in their lives ,love others and respect their elders.

What are some unique parenting practices in your country/culture?: In our country we discipline kids with a wooden spoon, not all the time but when they misbehaving. Kids should respect adults.

Is it expensive to raise a child in your country?: It is expensive to raise a child in my country, especially if you are working. Daycare and diapers cost a lot. Our country doesn’t offset this with financial assistance to mothers.

How is motherhood viewed in your country? How is single parenting viewed?: Motherhood is viewed as a good thing, but only if you are married. If you are single, it’s looked down upon. No man wants to marry a woman with a child by another man, because the family will call her vhanha, meaning woman with a child from another man.

What type of maternal care did you receive? How much maternity leave do mothers receive from their jobs?: I had the best maternal care, because I gave birth at a private hospital with a midwife. I was in labor for only an hour and a half. My midwife couldn’t believe I was a first time mum. My husband was very supportive. Mothers have six-month maternity leave, but the time off can vary depending on the company.

Is breastfeeding supported? How long do mothers typically breastfed their children?: Breastfeeding is very supported, but only for those mothers without HIV. Mothers normally nurse six months to a year.

What are the feeding habits like in your county? What types of foods do babies and toddlers eat?: The feeding habits are bad. Some start feeding their babies porridge at 2 months, but doctors advise that babies start at six months. I started my son on solids at eight months, because I stocked up and froze so much breast milk. The type of food that babies have is maize porridge with peanut butter, and when they are toddlers, they eat sadza maize (cooked cornmeal) and soup. When babies are teething, we give them give biltong (dried, cured meat) to chew on.

Are there special celebrations or traditions observed in your culture?: Our celebration is done before the baby is born Our celebration is done before baby is born. My husband’s family gave my mother a goat to ask her to take care of me, and a cloth for her to make a dress for herself. They also gave my dad a goat to celebrate my first child.

Hey DFTM Fam–Are you raising a baby outside of the U.S.? We would love to hear about your international experience! Email us, answering the questions above and providing two to three photos, at



About The Author

Vlog Mom/DFTM Creator

Not long ago, Heather Hopson hosted a television show in the Cayman Islands. Today, she's back home writing a different kind of story as a new mom. In her 15 years working as a professional journalist, this by far is her best assignment! Growing up, she dreamed of becoming Oprah Winfrey. She was the features editor for her school’s newspaper and a teen talk show host for her city’s most popular radio station. She went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Michigan State University. After graduation, she worked as a television producer and reporter at CBS, NBC and Fox affiliates throughout the U.S. Instead of heading to Chicago to join Ms. Winfrey on her set, she bought a plane ticket to the Cayman Islands instead. She arrived five days before a category five hurricane! She lived in paradise for seven years, hosted an award-winning television show and traveled the globe with a government delegation. She also served on the board of directors for Big Brothers Big Sisters and spearheaded a Send a Kid to Camp campaign. Then, she relocated to Washington, D.C. to obtain a teaching certification and instruct 8th grade reading at a high needs middle school. She later returned to her hometown of Pittsburgh, PA to raise her daughter Caitlynn, now 4-years-old. During her 10-month-stint as a stay-at-home mom, Caitlynn inspired her to create this blog, and Diary of a First Time Mom was born on Mother’s Day 2012. Two years later, she expanded the family to include 20+ writers. Currently, Heather serves as the communications director at Allies for Children. In addition, she is the owner of Motor Mouth Multimedia, which ranked #49 in Startup Nation’s Home-Based 100 Competition sponsored by Discover Card and Sam’s Club. Recently, The Pittsburgh Foundation and The Heinz Endowments selected Heather to receive an Emerging Black Artist award to develop Diary of a First Time Mom.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.