Nthabiseng Mohanela is a 29 year-old entrepreneur and artist who is passionate about social change and sustainable development. She has experience in Interior Architecture and Wellness. She has devoted the past few years to services as a Volunteer and Assistant Coordinator at the Morija Arts Centre. Through her company, she has developed a product called Nomapads - a brand of eco-friendly sanitary towels.
What motivated you to start your business?
I have always wanted to be a business woman growing up. I am also highly gifted with a plathora of business ideas and so at some point I was going to pursue this on a professional level. It was only a matter of time. In 2016 I registered my Arts and Wellness company called MadhouseRain (Pty) Ltd, whose main goal is to provide and curate sustainable learning and skill sharing platforms as well as manufacturing of sustainable and eco-friendly products. We curate Wellness retreats, Art Therapy workshops as well as produce and release educational content.
What is your big vision with your company?
Our vision is to see our company contribute towards a poverty-free Lesotho. We believe, our biggest assets as humans to be our minds. By transforming and creating safe and nurturing spaces for our minds, we can start to materialize what we envision and can inspire others to do the same. We also believe that we are a wealthy nation full of peculiar natural resources. Be recognizing and acknowledging these resources, we can then build a fruitful future based on patriotism and pride for our Land.
What else are you doing to contribute to Lesotho's green economy?
We are currently working to develop our newest product called NomaPads. This is a social innitiative that manufactures reusable sanitary pads. We also offer menstrual hygiene education by means of curating a radio segment every Wednesday with a local online radio as well as releasing podcasts on our social media pages. The aim is to eradicate period poverty in Lesotho by providing vulnerable girls and women with sanitary products as well as education.
We have also partnered with other organisations and stakeholders to promote sustainable farming and agricultural workshops and forums called Organic Recipes and Arts (ORA) Farmers' Forum. The objective is to make sustainability a livelihood even with the kind of food we eat as we believe wellness starts with a healthy body and mind.
What do you think our role in sustainability as Basotho is?
To me sustainability means living beyond now and possessing a mindset that protects the collective. It means doing business in such a way that we consider how our work may impact others and the environment, and not just focusing on making profit. We profit the most when we maintain an environment that is safe from human-inflicted harm, when our products are affordable and of the best quality. As Basotho, our thinking should be centred around protecting our land, resources and relationships. We must think for the lives of those coming after us and we must strive to build a better world for them. Things such as corruption and crime must cease to exist for Lesotho and Basotho to thrive, as they threaten our sustainability.
How can people get involved to support your initiative?
People may support Nomapads by donating funds to support our radio awareness campaign. People may also fund high schools to enable them to access our sanitary pads. The campaign is on-going and has since provided 5 high schools with reusable sanitary pads.
Connect with Nthabiseng on social media