Dr Kgomotso Mogapi
Graduating as a doctor from the University of Cape Town in 2005, Kgomotso thought she would spend her life working in hospitals, saving lives. “Only four years later I had left the practice of medicine having felt that I was not really contributing to the quality of life of the people I was serving.”
In 2009, frustrated that she was not making a difference as a doctor in the live’s of people who continued to suffer from preventable diseases, she chose to create a company that would find a solution to the problem of healthcare and in 2010 started the A’Dare Women Wellness Centre with a few other young women.
“We offer preventative healthcare, wellness and lifestyle solutions to women, with focus on keeping women healthy. Our centre is located in Mabopane, Tshwane and our services include: lifestyle intervention plans , screening services, general and women specific consultations. We also provide support services such as women’s products and Veggie Pharm,” says Mogapi.
Whilst doing her locum, Kgomotso realized that 80% of her consulting database was women and children under the age of 12. Her turning point was when she consulted with a 23-year-old woman with cervical cancer who had been turned away from the government hospital when she was 21. “Cervical cancer is a preventable disease and it our offering through A’Dare Women Wellness Centre could have helped not only that young women, but many more like her!”
The A’Dare Women’s Wellness Centre identifies potential life-threatening diseases (with focus on cervical cancer, diabetes, hypertension and obesity) and treats and, sometimes, reverses them.
“We are actively reducing the burden of disease by identifying risky lifestyles, medical conditions in their early phase and thus we are able to change the course of health of our clients. Through our education programme we also empower our clients to take the health of their family into their hands. We are thus contributing to a healthier, productive community,” she says.
They empower women in the community by employing and training them to work in their Centre and they aim to empower young girls by supporting them in two healthcare education programmes: South African Women in Aviation and Kula Youth Networks Girl Power.
It took Kgo otso five years to develop the preventative model of healthcare for women in a country where healthcare is primarily curative.
“I realized that my knowledge of medicine and my passion for the work would not be enough to get the business to where it needed to be. So I went in search of a place that would teach me about business,” she says.
The Branson Centre helped her learn the language of business, to understand the importance of a business model and to believe it was possible to build a business that was a force of good.
“I’ve learned so much, but this stood out for me to make me resilient in tough times: Life and building a business is like climbing a mountain; sometimes, often, you may need to return to base camp (the bottom) to recharge, and sometimes, you may not even reach the summit, but, never give up and keep training,” says Mogapi.
The A’Dare Women’s Wellness Centre is now financed by Nedbank, has exposure in the media and is looking to grow by using technology to make the healthcare model accessible and to have this model as the primary healthcare model in South Africa.