'I want to help transform township and rural healthcare' – Boitumelo Ntsoane

“To young entrepreneurs starting out, I would say keep your eyes on the vision, continuously work on yourself and develop those individuals around you, because they will ultimately assist you in achieving success.” – Boitumelo Ntsoane

Boitumelo Ntsoane calls herself a ‘typical’ township girl; born to a teenage mother who raised her child to go after what she wanted in life. Ntsoane says that one of the biggest motivators that put her on the path of entrepreneurship early on in her life was her mom threatening that if she didn’t work hard enough, she would end up working in a fish and chips shop for the rest of her life. To prevent the fish and chips shop scenario from becoming a reality, Ntsoane studied hard and received a scholarship to study toward a pharmacist’s degree.

Once Ntsoane joined the working world, she found it very restrictive, and it made her feel trapped because she felt as if she were fulfilling someone else’s vision. Ntsoane decided that she needed more flexibility; this would allow her to follow her vision and still have time for herself. Her need for independence sparked the creation of Afrilink Healthcare, which began as a small medical centre in a residential area hosting a doctor, dentist, optometrist and a pharmacy.

After two years, Ntsoane re-invested all of her profits back into her business to purchase a fully furnished mobile clinic, which also incorporated an in-house clinic managed by a retired nurse. Now, Afrilink Healthcare assists Tshwane Department of Health to conduct school-based health campaigns, which has touched 386 schools so far. A growing number of healthcare centres are opening in mining communities, with a view to improve access to healthcare and health education. Ntsoane sees this as an opportunity to expand and enhance the reach of Afrilink Healthcare.

Source: Entrepreneur Mag