Business management

Black History Month: #TimeForChange with Revitalise Minds CEO Jeniffer Makau

Jeniffer Makau founded her wellness company Revitalise Minds in 2019, inspired by the principles of social therapies used in her native Kenya.

Tell us about your business

“Revitalise Minds offers one-to-one mental health therapy and promotes mental well-being through efficient, effective and practical social activities. We take a holistic approach that is reliable, innovative, person-centred and affordable. We also offer crafting activities and a range of wellness products.”

Why was starting a business important to you?

“I had been working in a care home and I noticed that many of the residents were suffering from mental health issues, so I set out to find a solution in the UK based on treatment principles that are already used for the elderly in Africa, where I’m from. When I looked around, I saw that nothing existed here that exactly offered the service I wanted to provide.

“I needed to create my own solution, and out of that I developed the concept and my company. My approach incorporates my own African-ness and the experience of social interaction from the African perspective, mixed with British culture. It’s a unique and effective approach.”

What’s been the biggest obstacle you’ve encountered and how did you overcome it?

“Bringing staff on board and all the responsibilities that go along with that was difficult for me. I thought I was prepared to have employees, but actually I wasn’t ready. I didn’t have very clear working systems of supervision and, as a result, things became quite challenging and it almost ruined my business.

“That period was quite an uncertain time for the business, but it was also the greatest learning curve for me. I managed to overcome the challenges and I became determined that I wouldn’t make the same mistakes going forward.”

It’s important that we all take the time to recognise the contribution we have made to the world

Jeniffer Makau
Founder, Revitalise Minds

Can you pinpoint a positive change you’ve made?

“I feel that I’m part of an ongoing story of making a change for the better. Mental health is a subject that carries a lot of stigma, and even more so for Black people, so I believe that Revitalise Minds is helping to make a really positive change in people’s lives every day. I would love for as many clients as possible to look back in years to come and appreciate Revitalise Minds for helping them.”

What is the importance of Black History Month for you?

“For me, being Black is my identity, and Black History Month is very important because it celebrates the successes of the Black and African community.

“It’s vital for us to use this time and opportunity to make ourselves as Black people understand that our identity is a key component here of our lives, and generally to make our voices heard.

“It also allows the community of Black business leaders and people who are making significant changes in their fields to highlight their successes. It’s important that we all take the time to recognise the contribution we have made to the world.”

What’s your top tip for other entrepreneurs?

“My advice is stay to your course, because growth takes time. Before I moved to the UK, I started some small businesses in Kenya that were just about making money. There was no real mission other than making money quickly. When the money stopped, the business stopped.

“Now, everything I do in business affects other people’s lives, and the continuity of care is so important when you are treating mental health issues. You have to stay on your course.

“I’m looking forward to leaving a legacy one day where people would come back and say there was a positive change in their lives because of Revitalise Minds. The profits of your business are important, but you also need to profit the community and society.”

To celebrate Black History Month, we are hosting a special celebration of Black culture and heritage on Friday October 28. Find out more and grow your own network here:

Black History Month event

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