#DisruptiveZimStartups: Ignite Africa Offers Livesaving Solutions for Zimbabweans


Innovators thrive on wild imagination with the belief that whats done elsewhere can be done locally. Pitching her innovation clad in a wedding attire, this vivacious woman who heads Imagine Africa’s Dr Chiedza Kambasha said her 3D Bio-printing technology will revolutionise imaging technology in ZImbabwe. 

She took the disruptive innovation route following a unique maternal condition called placenta percreta which she survived by a whisker. Unfortunately her son passed on due to the condition. This loss could have been averted had this 3D bio-printing been popularised in Zimbabwe for being fast, quick, effective and lifesaving.

By Marvelous Chibagidi

As necessity is the mother of all invention, the zestful innovator  then birthed this 3D bio printing technology   administered by her company Ignite Africa. 

At the Seedstars World Harare  Startup competition held recently at the Impact Hub, this chubby yet agile woman took the hearts of many for her highly spirited pitch.

Dr Chiedza Kambasha is a young entrepreneur from Zimbabwe who launched the Ignite Africa campaign that is introducing 3D Biological printers to reduce the mortality rates in the country.  With this imaging technology there will be no more donor waiting lists and no more suffering and the campaign trains volunteers who come from deprived backgrounds in the technology transfer program.

Kambasha after her own experience realised that we got high maternity mortality rates as well as a diminished supply of organs. According to the World Health Organisation, one in three women dies from the placenta percreta twith one in five children dying from the complications of this disease.

Kambasha was miraculously saved by a 3D bio-printed organ as she managed to get a valve inserted in her bladder so that she would not have to use another aid to help her urinate.

She also mentioned that silicone and titanium are some of the untapped and under-recognised resources  that are in Zimbabwe with the ability to heal and save lives.

At the start up competition,  Kambasha presented a titanium rib cage which was implanted  in  Spain while saying that the same titanium should be given as much prevalence  as gold and other high rated minerals.

With this 3D bio-bio printing in the maternal side  Ignite Africa will be able to provide the 5ml valve like the one Chiedza got when she had placenta percreta and also provide cartilage, cheap prosthetic for children born with disabilities and also those people who were victims of land mines,reconstructive  surgery for medical  purposes and cosmetics also,mastectomies, breast forms,silicon 3D printed testicular implants for victims of chronic prostate cancer .

They have a solution for those rural people who do not have money and also can not access the technology. So Ignite Africa has the barter-cash exchange solution where when you want to pay you pay with whatever it is that you grow or keep.

3D Bioprinting

3D Bioprinting

They have teamed up with the Trauma center in Borrowdale where they have opened a plastic surgery unit to serve their pay as you go clients.

“Doctors and centers can franchise with Ignite Africa by paying up $33 500 with 10% of the annual profits being paid to Ignite Africa,” said Kambasha.

This becomes a clarion  call to stakeholders in the health sector to grasp the ideas and  adopt such technologies  to prevent child mortality like her son who simply needed a air splinter which got too late.

This 3D bio-printing technology with the potential to save  so many lives with healthcare actually made cheaper for some as an air splinter would cost $5 but it would  cost $2000 to ship it. So the Ignite Africa initiative is there to help save lives and even make it cheaper for those in marginal areas and also make miracles in those circumstances where it once seemed an impossibility.


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