Profile: the FemBioBiz Pitch Training event Winner in Zimbabwe, Stella Gonye

Stella teaching children about dental health

Stella Gonye won the FemBioBiz Pitch Training event in Zimbabwe on 2 June 2017 and is one of the FemBioBiz finalists.

Stella Gonye has been in the dental practice for 9 years and she is also a Tutor at the School of Dental Therapy and Technology at Parirenyatwa Hospital in Harare, Zimbabwe. “I am a self-driven Dental Therapist passionate about health matters. My purpose in life is to serve communities and bring healthy smiles to people,” she states.

She is a partner at Chengie Defluoridation Technologies, working with Mr. Chengetai Dunga who is a dental practitioner and a scientist with 14 years experience. Drawing on their field experience and research work, they realized a rise in the brown stained teeth in the young generation – a condition called fluorosis which is caused by excess fluoride in water consumed by people in affected areas. She remarks: “As we researched more we realized excess fluoride can also cause skeletal fluorosis, immune suppression, kidney damage, arthritis and loss of vision.”

Therefore in 2014 Chengie Defluoridation Technologies was birthed to find a solution to remove excess fluoride in water consumed by human beings to the recommended concentration of less than 0.7mg/l by WHO guidelines. Their aim is to eradicate fluorosis and fluoride related conditions in Zimbabwe and Africa. Stella estimates that 19 districts in Zimbabwe are affected, with an estimated 3 million people living in these areas. South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Kenya, Nigeria are also some of the affected African countries.

Their products include defluoridators such as advanced calcium bonded filter cubes, pellets and filter balls; advanced ceramic calcium bonded pots; advanced plastic technology; and Fluoride free water.

The project holds a patent with African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (ARIPO) and was approved by the Ministry of Health and Child Care - Zimbabwe. They also have a partnership with ZEGU University in Bindura. Stella’s partner, Mr. Dunga was nominated for an award by AMH holdings in recognition his work on Fluorosis Mitigation on behalf of the company on June 6 2017.