34 & 31
The Nest Space
Banesa Molauoa Tseki, 34, and Dr Anesu Mbizvo, 31 are the co-owners and founders of The Nest Space, the first black and female-run yoga and wellness centre in Johannesburg.
Mindfulness was something they got to taste at a very early age as their parents made the conscious decision to expose their daughters to alternative concepts of healing and wellness.
They have created a space for people to heal and experience alternative modes of healing such as meditation, reiki, sound healing, moon ceremonies and hypnotherapy.
The Nest Space has a yoga studio, alternative healing therapy room, vegan café and zero-waste grocery, and is as African as it gets as these concepts originated from our continent, Anesu explains. During the lockdown they were forced to close their doors and successfully ran their businesses online while keeping all 10 staff members employed.
They have since opened up a yoga teacher training school and to date have trained just under 80 yoga teachers of colour. “We continue to advocate for the radical healing and self-care of people of colour through various missions,” says Banesa. “The Nest is built around the values of inclusivity, simplicity, fair representation, freedom of self, connection, community, harmony, self-celebration and self-expression,” adds Anesu.
- BA, University of Cape Town
- Medical doctorate, University of Cape Town
- Completing honours in brand building and communications at Vega
- We were on the cover of wellness magazine Holistca for their 2021 Visionary Issue “Forging a New Way Ahead” and we were featured on CNN’s Inside Africa as “Changemakers”.
- Our biggest milestone was opening up a yoga teacher training school during the lockdown and have since trained and certified over 40 yogis of colour in South Africa.
For both of us, it would definitely be the conscious decision our parents made to expose us to an alternative world of healing and wellness. For Tseki this manifested in her thirst for reading that came at a young age and coming across A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle. For Mbizvo this manifested in the yoga classes her mother would take her to from a very young age. Mindfulness was something they got to taste at a very early age.
We would tell our younger selves to take a moment and breathe — there is immense power in the breath and so long as we breathe we will succeed.
We would like South Africa to be yet another example to the world of what happens when a country embodies the spirit of Ubuntu. Despite our shortcomings, trials and tribulations we continue to produce some of the best innovative minds and leaders of our time.
We hope South Africa becomes a mecca where indigenous knowledge systems are acknowledged and respected just as much as Western ones, if not more. Our leaders should stand as stark examples of what happens when one embodies a spirit of resilience and how supported they will be if their pursuits are intrinsically connected to the needs of their citizens.