Stephen Ogweno is a Co-Founder and the Chief Executive Officer of the multi award winning health startup Lifesten Health based in Kigali, Rwanda. Lifesten Health recently won the Hanga Pitchfest and the Novartis Foundation grant to implement the Kigali CV Health Challenge project. The multi-award-winning health startup that raised 300,000 USD in a span of 1 week to improve healthcare for the Rwandan population. Lifesten health is a company that provides incentive-based health and wellness programmes to improve the population’s health. With Lifesten health users can engage in daily health challenges and get rewarded for it when they complete the challenges. Simply put, Lifesten Health rewards you for being healthy. Lifesten focuses on improving people’s lifestyles and preventing non communicable diseases. Essentially with Lifesten Health the goal is to prevent individuals from becoming sick. But who is behind these multi award winning health start up? Meet Ogweno Stephen. Here is 5 facts about this entrepreneur.
- He was born with childhood obesity
Stephen Ogweno was born with childhood obesity and his story has been well documented as a tool for advocacy. In his early years, Stephen faced a lot of discrimination and health challenges that come with being born with childhood obesity. In his feature with the Global NCD Alliance under the NCD Diaries Programme Stephen recounts his struggles with childhood obesity and the fact that people did not recognize childhood obesity as a disease. Stephen has lived with hypertension, overweight, and depression courtesy of his childhood obesity condition. However, his story takes a surprising turn when he took a 7-year journey to change his lifestyle, join active weightlifting, change his diets and embrace a healthy living which saw his lose a significant amount of weight, compete at a body building competition and continue to live within the healthy weight limits. Clearly the journey with non-communicable diseases is something Stephen has experienced throughout his life, and this explains the passion that he has towards addressing these diseases and improving peoples lifestyle.
- He started his health entrepreneurship journey 7 years ago in Kenya
Stephen Ogweno is perhaps better known through his first health startup Stowelink Inc which really revolutionized the conversation on non-communicable diseases, innovation and young people in Kenya. He started this organization 7 years ago with the primary ethos being to make information and diagnostic services for non-communicable diseases available to all at all times and in relevant formats. Through Stowelink Stephen was able to reach over 10 million lives implementing 7 major projects in 10 countries in sub–Saharan Africa. In Kenya, this was among the very first, if not the first youth led organization that focused on youth and non-communicable diseases issues. This made him a very renown figure in the health space and an advocate for youth and non-communicable diseases.
- He has worked with the biggest global health organizations
Stephen Ogweno has had extensive experience working in the fields of non-communicable diseases both locally, regionally and globally. Some of the global organizations that Stephen has held key positions include in the Global Coordinating Mechanism for The World Health Organization where Stephen was a part of the committee for NCD Labs program. In this position Stephen advised The World Health Organization on innovation in the non-communicable diseases space and with a particular focus on the next generation. He also worked with the World Obesity Federation as a trainer at the Scope Schools and as a member of the planning committee for the World Obesity Day. Finally, he also has worked with the Global Non-Communicable Diseases Alliance where he sits on the advisory board for Our Views Our Voices Program. This is just to mention a few of the experiences that he has had in the field of non-communicable diseases at a global level.
- He is a well-known researcher in the field of non-communicable diseases and health tech
Stephen has contributed to and published 4 global policy briefs with the World Health Organization, World Oral Health Federation, The Government Of Kenya and The Global NCD Alliance. He has also published 7 research papers and numerous opinion pieces with the largest organizations in this space like Project Syndicate and DevEx . In 2020 one his papers won the World Health Organizations Hideyo Noguchi Scholarship for Young African Researchers. In the paper he discussed how health tech could be used to deliver improved services in the sub-Saharan Africa market. Ogweno continues to be a budding voice of authority in the scientific field especially in the topics of non-communicable diseases and health tech.
- He has published 7 books including 2 global best sellers
Ogweno Stephen has published 7 books including The Drug Free Youth, The Mental Health Matters Anthology and the best seller We Have A Dream. His latest book Practical Skills for Entrepreneurial Success has been well received with it selling out 1,000 copies 3 weeks after it launch. As author Ogweno’s books primarily focus on health and entrepreneurship where he offers his insights into both topics through extensive delivery in writing.
As a co-founder and CEO for Lifesten Health, Ogweno Stephen takes on this challenge as his next step in growing and evolving as a health innovator and entrepreneur. Lifesten Health for him represents the next step in the fight against non-communicable diseases and in bringing the power back t the people. Ogweno believes that health belongs to the people and therefore is highly determined to ensure that individuals receive in the best format and that’s what Lifesten Health intends to deliver.
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