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Zolani Metu, 28

Zolani Metu, 28

Mental health consultant and senior manager
Decolonial Mental Health and Jakes Gerwel Fellowship

Zolani Metu is the founder and director of Decolonial Mental Health (DMH). Established after Metu completed his master’s in social work at the University of Cape Town, DMH provides Afro-inspired solutions to psychosocial challenges in South Africa. Metu distinguishes...

Nabeel Allie | mg.co.za
Nelisiwe Mzili, 26

Nelisiwe Mzili, 26

Paramedic
ER24

Nelisiwe Mzili, a paramedic and first responder to car accidents and other emergencies, says that she’s driven to excel by the honour and the responsibility that she has been given to care for other human beings. The necessary and difficult work undertaken by Mzili...

Oratile Mashazi | mg.co.za
Nicholas Pereira, 32

Nicholas Pereira, 32

Physiotherapist
Enhanced Physiotherapy

Nicholas Pereira is a physiotherapist based in KwaZulu-Natal and the founder of Enhanced Physiotherapy, which he runs out of three locations: Hilton, Maritzburg College and Maritzburg United Football Club. Together with his partners, he teaches his philosophy of...

Tshiamo Seape | mg.co.za
Avis Anya Nowbuth, 28

Avis Anya Nowbuth, 28

Medical researcher and founder
Pan-African Organisation for Health Education and Research, I_AMResponsible_Africa

Medical researcher Avis Anya Nowbuth is inspiring a new generation of health workers to tackle the issue of antimicrobial resistance. After studying medicine in Lusaka, Nowbuth joined the Pan-African Organisation for Health, Education and Research, and her “entire...

Andie Reeves | mg.co.za
Lethabo Sekele, 31

Lethabo Sekele, 31

Founder and chief executive
WorkWell Workplace Mental Health

Lethabo Sekele founded WorkWell in 2019 to address mental health stigma in the workplace and educate companies about how to create psychologically healthy workplaces. “While a lot of progress has been made in encouraging open dialogue around mental health in various...

Afrika Bogatsu | mg.co.za
Lucy Khofi, 27

Lucy Khofi, 27

Academic and women’s health activist
Wits Anthropology Department and Study Trust

It was her studies and research in medical anthropology that set Lucy Khofi, a master’s candidate at the University of the Witwatersrand, on the path of women’s health advocacy. Her desire to address issues of social inequality is indelibly bound to her academic...

Zia Haffejee | mg.co.za
Candice Langford, 31

Candice Langford, 31

Physiotherapist, practice owner, course author and public speaker
Nurture Pelvic Health

It’s never too late to change direction as long as you are still moving forward, and physiotherapist, author and public speaker Candice Langford is an example of that. She started off as a marine biologist and ecologist, but later answered her “calling” to pursue a...

Lineo Leteba | mg.co.za
Jill Ryan, 31

Jill Ryan, 31

Co-ordinator: Gender non-violence
Equality Unit, Centre for Student Counselling and Development, Stellenbosch University

Jill Ryan has one ultimate goal: a violence-free South Africa. “This is a big dream, but every journey starts with a single step,” she says. Since obtaining her PhD in child and family studies at the University of the Western Cape, Ryan has contributed to the field...

Andie Reeves | mg.co.za
Dylan Benyon, 33

Dylan Benyon, 33

Founder and managing director
Cognition & Co

Dylan Benyon founded Cognition & Co in 2018 as a means to advocate for mental health in South Africa and give those wanting to study in the field of psychology a place to find information and networking opportunities. His goal has always been to close the gap between...

Shai Rama | mg.co.za
Amanda Brewer, 32

Amanda Brewer, 32

Health systems strengthening and policy specialist
Guidehouse International

Health systems and policy specialist Amanda Brewer has had her hands especially full during the fight against Covid-19. While the pandemic has been a challenge, Brewer highlights the positives: “In the face of crisis, South Africans can come together for a common goal...

Andie Reeves | mg.co.za
Cameron Joseph, 23

Cameron Joseph, 23

Medical student
University of Cape Town

Cameron Joseph is a medical student in his fifth year at the University of Cape Town. Despite his youth, Joseph is ambitious and outgoing, already making a significant impression on all those who encounter him. As a clinical student, he rotates through various...

James Nash | mg.co.za
Raikane Seretlo, 33

Raikane Seretlo, 33

Clinical applications specialists, lecturer and research assistant
Philips (META) & University of Pretoria

Changing the status quo of healthcare in Africa requires the efforts of people such as Raikane Seretlo — a clinical applications specialist for Philips, whose work entails leading obstetrics projects at hospitals and conducting training on medical software and...

Oratile Mashazi | mg.co.za
Muhammed Vally, 33

Muhammed Vally, 33

Lecturer and pharmacist
University of Witwatersrand

Clinical pharmacy lecturer Muhammed Vally is one of the brains behind a project at Wits University to create a clinic where students can practice their skills on staff and fellow students. The Screening Testing Programme for pharmacy students lets them check blood...

Lesley Stones | mg.co.za
Neziswa Titi, 35

Neziswa Titi, 35

Research psychologist
Children’s Institute of the University of Cape Town

Describing herself as a “child-centric methodologist”, Neziswa Titi conducts research that prioritises children’s voices. How they make meaning of experiences of sexual violence and trauma was the topic of the studies for which she was recently awarded her PhD at the...

Zia Haffejee | mg.co.za
Bongs Mswane, 28

Bongs Mswane, 28

Community health promoter and researcher
Lenasia Community Health Centre

Bongani Mswane is a health professional who has recently entered the media industry through radio and presenting. “This background in media has helped me communicate better with others. My biggest surprise is that people actually recognise me at the hospital,” he...

Nabeel Allie | mg.co.za
Dina-Ruth Lulua, 34

Dina-Ruth Lulua, 34

Head of the graduate entry medical programme year I&II
Wits University

As Head of the graduate entry medical programme year I&II at Wits University’s Medical School, Dina-Ruth Lulua was involved in the education and graduation of more than 300 new medical students in the past year – a significant accomplishment against the backdrop...

Tshiamo Seape | mg.co.za
Alexander Abedian-Rawhani, 34

Alexander Abedian-Rawhani, 34

Cosmetic and community dentist
The Thinc Clinic & Wits University

Alexander Abedian-Rawhani is known to his patients and social media followers as Dr Smile. Thanks to his slew of celebrity clients, the Wits University alumnus has built a name beyond the health sector. He holds a top student graduate award for restorative dentistry,...

Sandiso Ngubane | mg.co.za
Mutshidzi Abigail Mulondo, 30

Mutshidzi Abigail Mulondo, 30

Lecturer
University of the Free State

“My biggest mistake was back in my first year of university when I chose to study medicine, not because I wanted to, but because I succumbed to peer and family pressure. I knew I wanted to serve humanity in a healthcare space, but that was not the right path.”...

Brandon Ferlito, 25

Brandon Ferlito, 25

Bioethicist
The South African Medical Association

A distinguished academic record preceded Brandon Ferlito’s present enrollment at the University of the Witwatersrand’s PhD programme in bioethics and health law. His tumultuous childhood as an openly gay youngster in Westbury — an area in Johannesburg that is better...

Zia Haffejee | mg.co.za
Lerato Solomon, 30

Lerato Solomon, 30

Founder and mental health advocate
Mental Matters with Lerato Solomon

“Everything I do is embedded in the values of community and humanity,” says Lerato Solomon, the founder of Mental Matters who is also currently completing her BA community development studies at Unisa. After seven years of studying law for financial gain, she realised...

Eunice Stoltz | mg.co.za