My name is Joana Claudio. I moved to Texas in 2001 with a lawyer background from Peru, at my age of 24 years old. I had a great experience trying to grow and become a part of my new culture and then suddenly, I had an unfortunate accident, making me the survivor of a drunk driving accident. Due to the injuries that tore through my skin and uncovered my bones and an open partial part of my left side of my face and half of my body which then led to limping from my left leg. I was unable to return to my job as representing the government of the state as a translator in another Spanish speaking countries and that's how I fell into entrepreneurship.
I did well after meeting ladies that could make a living cleaning people’s houses and being able to provide a better living to their kids that way. While they saw that I have abroad Caucasian friends and acquaintances, these honorable ladies reached out to me and asked me if I could help them with getting more jobs; after receiving $10 and $15 from them at my door, while I was with stiches in my face and not able to walk straight yet, just for referring them to friends of mine. They soon came to my house, a house that I soon was not going to be able to afford and give me money as a way of saying “Thank you for connecting us with new more appreciable and frequent customers.” Hmm, a little light up in my head suddenly switched on and I thought to myself, “I can make this bigger!” And ta-da – I did it.
I learned the business, I made myself to work with these ladies to learn what they know about cleaning houses and, even though at the beginning I had stiches on my face and I felt like throwing up every four hours, due the medications I was taking to recover, I kept on going, and going, until we finally did it. And only almost four years later, I achieved the American dream for a young 27 year old single woman: a successful business. I did it as a way of surviving and proving to myself that I could do anything I put my mind to.
After I created and helped build five successful cleaning services in Austin, Texas areas, selling them and working for other franchises and friends businesses as a consultant and after all that physical recovering, finantial, and successful few years thinking that I had it all, I needed love. I put myself in situations that I was not mature or prepared for. I put myself in a situation that I need to reinvent myself, this time as a single mother, so I had to move quickly. Having the best rewards of all my life, my children, I was innocent, stupid or maybe just being a Latin lady, grown into that culture to obey and honor your man/husband no mater what, sent me to failure.
The bottom line and making the story short is that I was left with zero pennies in my pocket and with so many responsibilities and bills to cover for and a new baby less then one year old but I stood up again to show my seven year old daughter at the time, that her mom can be strong and successful even though I was broken and working to fix and free my kids and myself from a filed domestic abusive marriage, I lift up myself again and this time I didn’t only do it because I had to survive for my kids or for myself, but because I made a promise, a promised to God: that if this time he helps me as he did before, I will help his children (all of us) and teach them how to survive and be better for themselves and I will help, and help, and help and I’ll keep that promise always, teaching, showing, guiding and providing to others and using all these benefits to create and continue and grow more and always.
That’s the concept of my business, showing through my own experience that we can do what we set our mind on especially how to survive, although surviving is not all in life. Life is more than that. I started this cleaning service, Austin Maids and Housekeepers, and continuing to grow it since 2013, which started with my own babysitters and housekeepers from my own personal use and properties that I had while I was married, and I no longer could afford to keep, but it just took for them to come to me and tell me, “Mrs. Joana, you are so nice, and we love working for you. Please don’t let us go, help us.”
I not only helped them again, I helped my kids, their kids, my customers, people through our charity events, I helped. And most of all I learned to help me for the first time, not for the money or for the surviving situation but to love and respect myself and appreciate and respect others.
I had to go through so much to get to know myself and to really know where and how to focus my passion and energy too, and now I am no longer a child with a broken face or a broken heart, I am a woman of forty years old, that knows how to make others achieve their potential, and how I can guide them and help them.
This is my tool of how to help them, this is my business, an extension of myself.
The concept of my business is:
LET ME HELP YOU WHILE YOU ARE HELPING US HELPING OTHERS!
Yes, it’s a cleaning service, but guess what? It’s a respectful, honest, loyal, great, and amicable cleaning service. We are conservative, protective, and very delicate to our customers privacy. We respect all of them and we will appreciate if you could give us a chance to show you what great hard workers we are.