Dr Kel: The Healthertainer

dr kel
I can proudly say that the word 'healthertainer' is from me - Dr. Kel @Healthertainer Click To Tweet

If you do not know Dr. Kel on social media, I really wonder where you have been. She is the vibrant young lady who provides medical information in a fun and catchy way on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

SLA contributor Ugochi got talking with her and she shared about her journey. Dr. Kel bagged her M.B.B.S Degree from Imo State University in 2014, did her Internship Program at 445, Nigerian Airforce Hospital, Ikeja Lagos and served at the Government House Clinic, Lokoja, Kogi state.

And of course, she was retained there after the completion of her NYSC. Who wouldn’t retain such a bundle of talents?

Let’s meet her!

How did you evolve to be this social media phenomenon?

I had always had a flair for entertainment and social media and I got involved in a few entertainment activities while in school. I was always active on social media ( HI5, Facebook, Myspace, Tagged, Keek) and it was all for fun until medical school got really serious and I had to disappear for a while.

After I graduated, I had more time for the internet but this time I didn’t want it to be just for fun, I wanted to educate people on basic health issues, add more value and impact lives with my social media presence. I thought about starting a health platform where I would teach health and health related topics but I wanted to do something different from the norm.

This meant health information delivery in the most entertaining and relatable fashion possible and this birthed the word: Healthertainer, a perfect blend of health and entertainment. I can proudly say that the first mention of the word “Healthertainer” on the digital media space was from me.

I didn't want social media to be just for fun, I wanted to educate people on basic health issues Click To Tweet

Asides being a doctor, what else do you do?

(Chuckles) Please don’t call me Jack of all trades after I am done with this question. Lol.

I have a registered start-up company which is a consulting agency that offers services to non-governmental organizations and organizations alike. We organize themed events, creating concepts and originating ideas for these events as well as supervising/implementing them.

Serving in Kogi State provided a fertile platform for my startup to thrive. During my service year, I handled a couple of successful projects which were really innovative and outstanding in the state.

  • “The Preemie Walk & Talk” for Tiny Beating Hearts Initiative, to celebrate World Prematurity Day,
  • “Governor Yahaya Bello Walk For Peace” for Youths For Peace And Security Nigeria, to celebrate the 365 Days in Office of the Executive Governor of Kogi State
  • “Annual Medical Outreach” for Ogori Grand Progressives Initiative, to celebrate the Ovia Osese Festival in Ogori Community, Kogi State

The above is my offline hustle. On social media, I have another “workshop”. I am a Digital Media Strategist and a Social Media Influencer. I focus mainly on Medico-Social issues and trending topics which appeal to my target audience and I turn it into educational viral content which I push from my social media platforms.

I have quite a robust platform with over 36,000 followers on Instagram, over 8,000 on Twitter who are interested in Health. I ride on these platforms to further promote my clients’ products and services.

It's not an easy endeavour combining medicine and other side hustles @Healthertainer Click To Tweet

How do you manage all the causes you’re involved with, work and your health platform?

Truth be told it’s not an easy endeavour combining Medicine and other side “hustles”. Nonetheless the key elements of determination and focus have helped me achieve the height I am at the moment and keeps driving me towards the future.

My primary focus is on my clinic duties (for now, until I blow, lol). In between seeing patients, I find time to work on my proposals, clients orders, concept generation, idea expansions and content for my page. It is all about “balance”.

I remember when I was working on my first CSR Project – #HepFreeZone last year. I somehow managed to find time to solicit for funds, plan and carry the event whilst doing my 9am – 6pm routine. Phew! Same with the projects I carried out for my clients and the outcome for each of these projects were commendable, I must add.

I am currently working on another project which will kick off any moment from now, and I know I’ll have to work my magic somehow to find time in between work or after work to do all the necessary things.

You seem to run all these smoothly?

“Smoothly,” you say? Wow. I take that as a compliment because most times I am all over the place and forgetting somethings I should have gotten done or neglecting some others. “Smoothly” isn’t quite the word, but somehow I manage to get it all done eventually.

I sit back after each feat and I wonder how I pulled it off. Truth be told it’s not an easy endeavour combining medicine and other side “pieces”, but we have to try.

Let’s talk about social media, how important is it to business today?

Oh yes! Social media has its perks. It is an effective tool for business as it helps you grow an audience and prospective clients. However, every entrepreneur has to be wary of “false impressions”. You need to target your audience and reach prospective clients/consumers.

Sometimes it is not about the number of followers you have, but the quality of followers. Make sure you are reaching out to the right people. Not just the “spectators” and “consumers” but also the investors and prospective clients.

Social media has given me a lot of exposure. People can easily follow my works and share them thereby expanding my network of followers. Social media has also provided me a cheaper and more efficient means of promoting my brand. I mean, Imagine if I had to print flyers and walk around town to distribute them or having to pay radio and TV stations for jingles and adverts. Social media is bae biko.

Sometimes it is not about the number of followers you have, but the quality of followers Click To Tweet

What apps are important for a smooth running of your business?

My laptop and phone are my primary workstations. Everything I need is just a click away. I use Instagram, Facebook, Thunderclap, Canva, Twitter, Gmail, Google Docs, mail chimp, Inshot, the list is endless.

What is your advice to young women trying to build a business?

The job you have now is the small picture, what you have inside of you is the bigger picture. Work on it, nurture it then break free.

Most people will not understand your plan, they might think it impossible, but don’t worry, it isn’t for them to understand, but for you to achieve. Keep at it, eventually, it will make sense to them. Stand out. Be innovative, add value, provide solutions and people will seek you out. (Just like SLA just did, lol)

Tell us something we may not know

Dr. Kel is a workaholic and a “jolly good fellow”. I love to work a lot, but I love to play even a lot more. Yes, I love to dance a lot, I love loud music. I’m almost always happy.

Because I think I’m emotionally mature and that people can learn from me, I love talking about relationships and matters of the heart. I love my family and close friends so dearly I would die for them (not literally though, lol).

My life is pretty easy. My happiness and inner peace matter a lot to me so I stay away from anything that threatens these.

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Dr. Ettamba Agborndip: Anyone can excel in the sciences regardless of their gender

Ettamba Agborndip she leads africa

It is widely believed that science is an all “male affair”. In fact, a walk through the science departments of most colleges or universities in Cameroon could convince you that girls don’t exist.

This is because girls are stereotypically considered weak in sciences. But in recent times, many young girls are challenging the myth about girls and science and doing it so well. 25-year-old Ettamba Agborndip, a medical doctor and fellow of the Moremi Initiative for Women’s Leadership in Africa, is one such lady challenging such stereotypes.

Dr Ettamba has been practicing now for 14 months since her excellent results from the Medical school at Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Buea, Cameroon. She told me in a late night WhatsApp chat that, “anyone can excel in the sciences regardless of their gender”.

Ettamba’s vision is to inspire women and young girls to make informed health decisions by educating them about the common pathologies affecting our communities.

What is the greatest feat of being a doctor?

A lot of personal time is consumed depending on the kind of patients you have in the wards.

Sometimes, I end up spending 24 hours in the hospital because I have an unstable patient and I cannot be at peace at home.

Did you encounter any challenge during the pursuit in becoming a doctor?

The whole process of becoming a doctor is a challenge.

From the long hours in class, to late hospital hours and sometimes gruesome ward rounds, to having to miss out on family events. But so far, I don’t have any regrets about being a doctor.

How did it feel when you received your medical degree?

It was an emotional day for me. I was happy to have conquered those 7 years, the look of pride and fulfillment on my parent’s face was priceless, and I was happy to have made my teacher’s proud.

I wouldn’t be where I am without my teachers.

Girls are stereotypically considered to be weak in science. How did you break that?

I went to an all-girls school so I did not get to experience that stereotype.

However, I do believe that anyone can excel in the sciences regardless of their gender. It’s all about passion, hard work and determination.

What advice can you give to young girls on challenging the myth about science being a guys thing?

I would advise young girls to believe in themselves and work hard. It always helps to get orientation about your desired field so as to better prepare yourself for the task ahead.

Secondly, I’ll advise them to equally have a mentor who can hold their hands and guide them especially when it gets difficult.

Did you have another career goal apart from being a doctor?

I have always wanted to be a doctor.

At some point engineering was tempting, but medicine has always been my passion.

What do you love about your job?

I love fact that we actually save people’s lives. There’s no amount of money which can replace the fulfillment you get when a patient says; “thank you doctor”.

It means the world. The sad thing about being a doctor is that you can’t save them all. Some patients don’t make it and it’s a fact that we must live with.

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Hajer Kammoun: I’ve always been engaged in multitasking

You know, sometimes you meet people that just make you want to sit down and reconsider your life’s objectives. Hajer Kammoun is one such person. She’s a medical student, a member of the International Association of Medical Students (Assiociamed), runs a school magazine, has participated in the SUSI program and is aiming at launching a social enterprise this year.

It doesn’t stop there. Hajer also plays the lute and is an active member of the Junior Chamber International (JCI) with which she directs the ‘HopiClown’ project which brings clowns to hospitals to cheer up sick kids. Hajer is now trying to revolutionise the Tunisian educational system through her upcoming social enterprise. Read on to get the biggest dose of inspiration you’ll receive this week.

Let’s start with the ‘Hopiclown’ project, how did you come to be the director it?

I always wanted to be a member of a ‘Clowns in a Hospital’ group. Since I didn’t find one , I wanted to create my own team. I had in my mind a new approach which was to engage youth and give them an opportunity to all experience being clowns. This was to unlock their potential, challenge them, organize them as a team (for many of them, it was their first time preparing and presenting shows in public), show and present them in public and have fun. All while creating happiness and bringing hope and joy of living to patients in hospitals.

I presented my idea and strategy to Junior Chamber International (JCI), a nonprofit organization of young active citizens age committed to creating impact in their communities. While some of the members approved the idea of organizing an event that targets children, the majority were against it. They thought the whole idea of us doing clown shows would be ridiculous and that it’d be better to hire professional clowns for this project.

They thought it would be impossible for us to cheer up sick children because it requires experience. But, I wasn’t convinced! I was so driven by the dream of being with my clown family and drawing smiles on children’s faces that the only thing I had in mind was to find another strategy to do it.

What did you do to overcome this challenge?

First, I had to get permission and know more about any challenges we could facing. Then, I wrote a letter asking to the Chief of Pediatric Service. On our first round, I went with my sister, two JCI members and a friend to a hospital. We took with us some gifts and decoration bought from our own money. I also brought my lute with me.

Even though we weren’t dressed as clowns, we talked to children and to their parents and made them laugh. I played my lute for them and we sang all together. This experience taught us a lot about working with sick children and their parents. We learnt things we would do again and things we’d have to avoid, the best gifts and the way we should give them… Most importantly, we saw the joy in the eyes of children and the happiness shared between parents as we performed. This proved me again how important my clowns in a hospital project would be.

Still, I had to ensure that I, and anyone involved in my project, were able to deal with sick children and understand their psychology without making any unnecessary errors. To motivate and create my team, I organized an open event, a training called ‘HopiClown’ in collaboration with a pedopsychiatrist, Mrs Sarra Bousleh and a comedian actor and producer, Mr. Wissem Slimene.


Did the training help with finally establishing ‘HopiClown’?

People who assisted loved the first training , many of them got comfortable with the idea of being clowns or at least with being disguised as fairies, cats, etc. I was able to grow my team by many members. We then had another training with Mr. Slimene to show us how to put on a clown’s play. From that day on, we became a large team organizing full clown shows with theatre, music, dancing, storytelling, team games and more.

The gift we get each time we put on a show, is the joy we see on the faces of children and their parents. We’ve one put on a show after the death of a baby and managed to change the atmosphere 180 degrees.

I love how we create this huge impact while at the same time developing our skills and having a lot of fun too! I now have a large clown family who have put on great shows with their amazing skills. Moreover, they keep asking me each time we meet about the next event. People I’ve never met before have contacted me to ask for my help with putting up shows in carcinology service and the elderly home of Sousse.

Why did you decide to start a magazine in your secondary school?

There were three things that gave me this idea. First, wherever I am I want to leave my fingerprint. I want to make it so when I leave, I’ve made a change in the environment so it’s not the same as when I entered. So, I had it in my mind to leave something to my school.

Second, one month before I started working on the magazine, a group of Belgians came to our school. I witnessed how different their perspectives of us compared to our reality as young Tunisian students.

I thought that it’d have been much better to have something to show them. Like a product of our school that informs about us, our culture, our talents, our ways of living, our thoughts etc. Third is that we never had a school magazine before, so I thought it was high time we made one.

This is how I got the idea to combine students’ skills to create a product that will last forever in our school, a magazine. We used the income that came from selling the magazine to buy some missing material and also left some the next generation. This was so that it can be easier for those following the same path to publish future editions. I shared my idea with friends, one of them was motivated and we started working on the magazine together. I’m definitely grateful to all the teachers who helped us, especially Mrs. Najoua Dahmeni

It took us some time to raise the money needed but when we published it we chose to call it LPS Archive. LPS is the abbreviation of the name of our school, Lycée Pilote de Sousse.lps-magazine

You’re working towards starting a social enterprise this year, what steps are you taking to ensure that your enterprise survives?

To ensure that my enterprise survives, I will first take considerable time choosing my team members. I want to bring together highly motivated people from different regions, with different talents. I’ll keep telling my team how important their mission is and how much our enterprise can impact future generations and change Tunisia.

I’ll make everyone feel their work and intervention are fundamental to the working of the enterprise and will listen to them. I’ll also learn from their ideas and give them different responsibilities. This way, everyone in my team feels this enterprise is theirs and that they have a say in its success. If my team sees themselves as part of my enterprise, they can’t leave it.

Then, I’ll organize training  for my team members especially team building ones to empower them, create harmony and build strong relationships. I’ll try my best to make the team members mission driven so that the work will be shared between them when I get too busy.

As for my work, I’ll take a more supervisory role ensuring that everything is going the way it should. Above all, I’ll always make time out for my enterprise. What matters is that I won’t stop, and I’m convinced that if I want something to happen then with work and especially God’s help, it will.

My life is only mine due to all its challenges. I know starting an enterprise won’t be very easy but we’ll never celebrate successes so happily if success was so easy to reach. So I’m completely prepared for the challenge!

What pushed you to engage in so many entrepreneurial activities as a student? How do you balance your studies with your other interests?

Voluntary and entrepreneurial activities are the essence of my life. They’re what make my life worthwhile. I believe every single person was born for a reason, for a mission that only she can accomplish. Everyone has something unique to add to the world.

Living with this belief, and trusting that I can make a change in the world, make me walk forward and aspire to always achieve more.

What do you do when the stress gets too much?

I make plans and do everything because I love to, not because I have to. I mean, I don’t do everything. I do things I love doing and that will get me closer to my objectives in life.

I have programs for studying and programs for other interests that add to my practical knowledge. I select priorities among my interests, decide what really matters to me and focus on them. When the stress gets too much I opt for the priorities. I’ll only spend my time in acting, learning and participating in things that get me closer to my objectives in life. There’s no loss of time at all. I’m not a fan of TV or hanging on social media just for the sake of it.

I actually got used to having many varied interests from a very early age. I’m grateful to everyone who inculcated this value in me, especially my parents. They made me integrate a karate club and music lessons since I was 5. I started playing the lute at 6 year old and I never stopped engaging in different things while studying.

I think this is how I got used to multitasking, it became a crucial way of living. Since I’ve always been engaged in many things at the same time, I got used to a stressful life. To give one example of balancing many things at the same time, let me tell you about my Baccalaureate year. In that year, I was active in my school’s artistic committee and preparing shows with them. I also assisted at many Amideast meetings, applied for ALA (the African Leadership Academy) and got accepted and published the magazine.

Would you say you enjoy the challenges that come with the various activities you’re involved in?

Honestly, the stress pushes me forward. It makes me achieve more than what I dreamed of. It makes my life exciting, full of surprises, meetings, giving, smiles, joy and challenges! People may feel sorry for me when seeing me very tired but I’m far from thinking about running away from stress or challenges. I’m just in love with the challenges and I’m definitely chasing them because they’re what make my life more worth living.

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