About Us

We are an NGO promoting the early detection of breast cancer. Your purchase could save a life. The main thrust of what we do is to drive awareness and education around preventative management and early detection of breast cancer, which have proven to offer the best chance at long-term survival.

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Our Brand Ambassador – Fortunate Twala

Fortunate Twala

Fortunate Twala

I studied Marketing, Early Childhood Development and Coaching and became a successful entrepreneur and businesswoman. I was privileged to win the 2019 Mrs Commonwealth SA Pageant and to reach the Top 50 of the 2020 Mrs SA Pageant finals, where I grew immensely as a person, public speaker and rainmaker.

Through these and other life experiences I have seen a deep need for assistance in underprivileged communities.  I have become well-known in my community for my outreach work in partnership with my husband.  Together, we have founded two NPOs – Zandile Day Care for the youth and Qoqizizwe Centre which offers much-needed feeding programmes.
I am passionate about the empowerment of women and when approached to represent the Check Know Prevent brand I knew this was where I belonged.  Too many remarkable women are being lost to this disease, yet breast cancer is one of the easiest cancers to detect early, promising better outcomes.  I look forward to helping the organisation gain the awareness and funding it needs to prosper.

Our Team

Debbie Gebhart

Debbie Gebhart

CEO

I have more than 20 years of Marketing experience, including 6 wonderful years as Marketing Director for Levi Strauss South Africa (Pty) Ltd, where my passion for giving back was born in line with their business ethos that “doing good is good for business”.  As part of the Levi’s® Red for Life programme, we tested over 350,000 people for HIV, and it was only natural when I left Levi’s that I would join NGO Shout-it-Now in the fight against HIV and AIDS.

My personal journey with cancer reflects the sad truth that 1 in 4 of us will be affected by cancer – and not only once.  I lost my cousin at 32 to oesophageal cancer and my grandmother at 68 to lung cancer.  My father lived with recurrences and metastases from prostate cancer for more than 12 years before passing, my stepfather just had a lucky encounter with a rare form of skin cancer (in that it had not spread), and my best friend of 30 years is both HIV+ and a colon cancer survivor.  I could add a frightening list of acquaintances, friends and colleagues that have triumphed over and succumbed to the battle with cancer. When my long-time friend Jenny de Oliveira first approached me with her dream of launching Check Know Prevent, I knew I had to be involved.

I believe strongly in CheckKnowPrevent’s focus on early detection saving lives and educating women from as early as their teens, and am extremely proud to be part of this organisation which I believe will make a significant difference in the fight against breast cancer.

Jenny De Oliveira

Jenny De Oliveira

Operations Director & Founder

I come from an Advertising background, specialising in promotions, experiential marketing, product launches and events. During my 20 years in the industry, I have worked on many blue-chip brands, with well-known marketers and local celebrities, where I have gained my knowledge and experience.

I started my own business in 2009 as a corporate clothing specialist, focussing on innovative ways to deliver clients’ product needs through fashionable styling and branding techniques. In 2012, my then partner and I developed the Check Know Prevent concept after doing a charity breast cancer drive, opening my eyes to a huge need in our country.

My motivation, inspiration and determination have come from family and friends who are fighting cancer and those who have lost the battle. My 1st hand experience with cancer is when my mom was diagnosed with Stage 3 Colon Cancer and how it still affects her today.

All of my experiences have brought me to this pivotal point – translating my passion into making a difference in people’s lives.

The vision behind the Check Know Prevent bra range is:

  • The early detection of cancer saves lives – so know your body and when to seek help.
  • Education is key – the bra will serve as a constant reminder to check one’s breasts and encourage women to start at a young age.
  • Buying our bras also benefits the community, as for every 5 sold we will donate one to a Grade 11 or 12 learner in need.
  • By keeping our manufacturing local we will be able to create employment and skills development, as most bras in SA are now imported.

Check Know Prevent will, with our collective passion and energy, make a significant difference in ensuring women stay abreast of their health!

Roland Jonathan

Roland Jonathan

Marketing Director

My 19 years in sales and marketing have led me along an interesting and exciting path, that has certainly driven my entrepreneurial spirit and my ability to work individually as well as being part of and managing a team. I embarked on a journey of entrepreneurship in 2011, which led me down a different path of understanding and appreciation of the principles of business.

At the end of 2014, I was struck by a devastating blow. I was diagnosed with stage 4 follicular lymphoma. I thought that this was the end of my life – and it certainly was the end of life as I knew it it certainly was the end of my life as I knew it, opening up a whole new meaning of life for me. I learned more about myself in this short space of time than I ever learned in the preceding years. In April 2015, I had a stem cell transplant. I did all the research that I could about it, but at no stage was there any information about what happens after you are discharged from the isolation ward. It took me a full 2 years to recover to some state of normalcy. During this process, I decided that I want to actively get involved with giving back and educating people about the cancer journey.

Check Know Prevent encompasses everything that I am looking for as far as giving back and sharing my cancer journey. The vision and mission of Check Know Prevent, align with my vision for giving back – and driving the message of early detection, which could have altered my journey, is key. I also believe that it is never too early for young women to learn about the signs of breast cancer, as it is becoming prevalent at younger ages,

Lorraine Verhagen

Lorraine Verhagen

Head of Events and Admin

My name is Lorraine Verhagen and I am 55 years old.  I am married with two children and love the outdoors. I do CrossFit, run and mountain biking. I have been employed since 2010 at Group Editors Company Pty Ltd as the PA to the Operations Director and Marketing Executive.

I am very involved in the community of George. I am also the current Chairperson for ‘CANSA Relay For Life,’ George.  The relay has done exceptionally well in the Southern Cape. We have received Global recognition, making our Relay the best in the world and I was recognised during a sitting of the National Council of Provinces for my contribution to fighting Cancer.  I am also very involved in charity events organised through the George Herald.

I received Rotary’s highest meritorious award, the Paul Harris Fellowship award, which is  Rotary Foundation’s way of expressing its appreciation for a substantial contribution made to humanitarian and educational programmes.

My love for charity work and its people has no boundaries. Check Know Prevent is very dear to my heart and I am committed to assisting this wonderful team to reach as many woman as it can with its life-saving message.

At the end of 2014, I was struck by a devastating blow. I was diagnosed with stage 4 follicular lymphoma. I thought that this was the end of my life – and it certainly was the end of life as I knew it it certainly was the end of my life as I knew it, opening up a whole new meaning of life for me. I learned more about myself in this short space of time than I ever learned in the preceding years. In April 2015, I had a stem cell transplant. I did all the research that I could about it, but at no stage was there any information about what happens after you are discharged from the isolation ward. It took me a full 2 years to recover to some state of normalcy. During this process, I decided that I want to actively get involved with giving back and educating people about the cancer journey.

Check Know Prevent encompasses all that I am looking for as far as giving back and sharing my cancer journey. The vision and mission of Check Know Prevent, align with my vision for giving back – and driving the message of early detection, which could have altered my journey, is key. I also believe that it is never too early for young women to learn about the signs of breast cancer, as it is becoming prevalent at younger ages.

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