A dedicated, strong-willed young woman, Ms Thendo Dzumba, has established herself as a highly sought-after occupational therapist whose services speak volumes of excellence, extra care and love.
She is the epitome of what youths desire to become and the right example that all things are possible when it comes to actualising one's dreams. She works for the Department of Health and she is also available for private services, where she attends to clients.
“I wanted a career in the division of health, with helping people in any health-related field as my main goal,” she said. “It was not easy to go straight from high school to a medical campus, so it took a year of restructuring and thinking. Eventually, I was admitted to a medical campus to study occupational therapy at the University of Limpopo’s Medunsa campus in 2009.”
She said that occupational therapy was an intriguing profession because one worked closely with patients and watched them recover and increase their well-being. She added that it was a profession that worked with helping people with physical, sensory or cognitive disabilities for them to be as independent as possible in all areas of their lives despite the disability, illness or other condition.
“The profession aims at functional independency in all activities of our daily lives and to compensate and adapt for any physical limitations,” she said.
Most people are not aware of the profession and therefore they do not utilise the services of an occupational therapist. “However, in public hospitals, and not primary health care facilities, most patients have access to an occupational therapist, but they are not aware as to who provides those services,” she said. “They generally refer to an occupational therapist as a doctor.”
She feels that this requires collaboration between the health-care providers and the patients, to help create awareness about occupational therapists and their role in one’s life.
She remembers that, during her days at university, she faced numerous challenges. Her enthusiasm to become something became the driving force to motivate her to achieve her goal of helping people.
“Do not let failure of today define your future, and do not let where you come from define where you are going,” she said. “We need self-discipline to achieve most of the luxuries we get to enjoy in life. So, work harder. If you put your mind on an idea, see to it that you get to actualise it. Make sure you become hungry for that dream you have. We are young, and we have made it.”
Thendo is a resident at Ha-Mulima village.
Date:13 May 2019 - By: Tshifhiwa Mukwevho
Tshifhiwa Given Mukwevho was born in 1984 in Madombidzha village, not far from Louis Trichardt in the Limpopo Province. After submitting articles for roughly a year for Limpopo Mirror's youth supplement, Makoya, he started writing for the main newspaper. He is a prolific writer who published his first book, titled A Traumatic Revenge in 2011. It focusses on life on the street and how to survive amidst poverty. His second book titled The Violent Gestures of Life was published in 2014.