Rendani Mutheiwana (29) is making headways in medical entrepreneurship after launching her orthotics and prosthetics business at the height of COVID-19, with the help of the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA).
Born and raised in Rathidili Village in the Vhembe District in Limpopo, Mutheiwana opened Rendani Mutheiwana Orthotics and Prosthetics in Makhado, after completing her internship and was unable to find a job.
After matriculating from Litshovhu Secondary School in 2009, she enrolled at the Vaal University of Technology and obtained a National Diploma in Sport Management in 2013.
It was in her final year that she became interested in medical orthotics (braces and splints) and prosthetics (external devices that replace body parts).
“I developed an interest in the Paralympics and wanted to work with people who are physically challenged or injured,” she says.
As a result, Mutheiwana registered at the Tshwane University of Technology and completed a National Diploma in Medical Orthotics and Prosthetics in 2019.
Not being able to find a job after completing her internship in 2020 didn’t stop her from pursuing her dream.
“I registered my business in August 2020 and started working as the sole director, developing it according to my vision. I spent a lot of time researching how to open and successfully run a private healthcare practice,” she says.
During her studies, she often walked past the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) office in Tshwane. “I researched what the NYDA does and knew I would be able to apply for funding for my business.”
Mutheiwana completed the NYDA’s short business management training course and then applied for funding. She received R50 000 and a website voucher with a 12-month maintenance contract.
“The grant funding took the business off the ground, providing basic tools, equipment and materials needed for my start-up; and the website plays a huge role in marketing,” she says.
Her inspiration came from her mother, also a successful entrepreneur.
Her mother opened a spaza shop in the late 1990s and started selling vegetables. In early 2000, she started growing morogo (African spinach) in her garden and selling her produce.
“I grew up seeing money coming in every day, and wanted a job that could do the same for me,” says Mutheiwana.
She urged aspiring entrepreneurs to find something that inspires them and make a living from their passion.
Her business, which now employs an administrative assistant, offers its clients treatment for orthopaedic disorders.
“We assess, measure and fit orthotic and prosthetic devices, and focus on restoring and improving physical mobility for those who are injured.
“I am working hard to grow the company and looking forward to creating more employment opportunities,” says Mutheiwana.
She stresses that it’s never too late to start something in life.
“Don’t be afraid to start something new, you can create a trail and open doors for others,” Mutheiwana adds.
For more information about Rendani Mutheiwana Orthotics and Prosthetics, visit http://rendaniorthotics.co.za.