My Pregnancy Journey was founded by South African Jacquline Rogers and was the winner for the 2020 Innovation Challenge. An educational pregnancy app that focuses on Africa and the unique challenges African women face, the app aims to empower women with everything they need to know about pregnancy, health and parenting.
What inspired you to create the My Pregnancy Journey app?
One day I came across shocking statistics when it comes to pregnancies in Africa. I started doing research and realised there is no comprehensive educational digital pregnancy solution in Africa, or no other pregnancy app globally that focuses on the unique challenges that African women and girls face during this time. I sold my first business and took action. It took two years to bring the ‘My Pregnancy Journey’ app together.
My Pregnancy Journey’s aim is to guide and empower all women with everything they need to know about pregnancy, health, and parenting. Why is this important for women across Africa?
Africa has got some of the highest rates globally when it comes to adolescent pregnancies, HIV infections and birth deaths. According to the UNFPA, maternal deaths could be reduced by about two-thirds, if the needs for modern educational pregnancy information and maternal and newborn health care were met. Investing in educational information and improved maternal health care brings many benefits including reduced risks of complications and improvement in health for mothers and their children. Evidence shows that women who are better educated tend to have healthier children. All of these investments bring significant benefits and effects not only for women and girls but also their children, families, communities and their country. Generally, a lower level of information limits our decision making.
You’ve been nominated for a number of awards and achievements including a nomination by WHO as one of Africa’s top 30 innovators. What advice do you have for other female start-up founders?
I guess my advice comes from being a female entrepreneur from South Africa, which is a different ball game. My advice would be to not give up, put yourself out there and constantly look for new opportunities, competitions, mentors and organizations that can help you push your project forward. Being an entrepreneur is not for everyone, you have to have tenacity, perseverance and know how to deal with rejection. I have had so many ‘no’s, but I didn’t give up.
As you are aware, we work towards a world where all women have access to a clean and safe birth with women on the African continent, among our global customer base. What benefit do you see in the work that BKFA does, particularly relevant to the African continent?
We have the same goals in mind and our missions are aligned. Many of the fatalities in Africa happen during the birthing process and that is where BKFA comes in, supplying safe birthing kits to prevent infections and lower the fatality rate. Our project guides the pregnant mother throughout her pregnancy journey. We educate and give the expectant mom everything she needs to know and look out for. We believe that every mom and baby matters, and everyone deserves to have all the relevant first world information during this incredibly special time, even if they are from a vulnerable community.
You can find out more about My Pregnancy App via the website.