STAR of the Month: Shauna takes ‘control’ over a construction site

June 10, 2019
Shauna makes sure the blocks are laid evenly.
Woman power! Shauna Controlla shows off her biceps.
Shauna sieves sand with the help of a workman.
Shauna Controlla mixes the mortar.
Shauna helps to place steel cages to form columns.
Shauna shovels sand, which she will then sift.
Shauna Controlla prepares to apply mortar on top of these blocks.
Working hard. Shauna Controlla has her hands full with this wheelbarrow as she carries blocks to another part of the site.
Despite the hard work, Shauna Controlla was having fun.

Dressed ready for combat in her fitted camouflage pants and top to match, Shauna Controlla thought she was prepared to take on the task of being a site worker on a location specially chosen by Greg Millwood of Millwood Creations.

All that changed when she admitted that she did not have all the things required for the job and was hoping to at least borrow a pair of gloves.

But it’s a small site, and the men promised to ‘take it easy’ on her.

“Me come out ah represent fi the females … to show the strength we have, but still remembering ah me say me ah the ‘rebellious student of dancehall’,” Shauna told her co-workers for the day.

After being introduced to all the men on the site, the STAR of the Month was given her first challenge – to mix the mortar.

“It wouldn’t be the first time I was doing this,” she shared, “I used to see my father mix cement and try help him when I was a little girl.”

Like most site workers, Shauna found herself juggling more than one duty. Within a short space of time the Control Button artiste was lifting and laying blocks, sifting sand, and putting steel cages in the place for columns.

All the men watched silently, some in awe at her attire, others questioning if she could manage.

Breaking the silence, Shauna’s shouts of, “No sah!” soon had everyone’s attention.

“This was definitely not the place to be dolled up,” she said, as sweat ran down her cheeks. “Lots of women feel like them shouldn’t do these types of jobs or that this is no place for us but I take comfort and ask how dem dweet,” she said.

Shauna said: “If I had to choose between working on a construction site and another job like as a beautician, I would choose the site because more money deh here suh. Look round Jamaica, is bare development a gwaan. And when no clients come into a salon, these men still have work.”

Location: Central Plaza

Hardest task for the day: Mixing the cement/mortar.

Easiest task for the day: Laying the blocks and filling them with mortar.

Shauna’s 5 Must-haves for the Site:


1. Gloves - to protect the delicate hands, both men and women you don’t want to have rough palms.

2. Dust mask - if you’re like me, the dust becomes a problem and affects my sinuses.

3. Back strap - for the heavy lifting your back may need support.

4. Right (heavy duty) shoes - trust me sneakers is not the best one although it is comfortable.

5. And a helmet - just in case.

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