Name: Danelle de Wet
Region: Kuils River, Cape Town, Western Cape.
Occupation: I am a first year BCom Marketing student at the IMM Graduate School of Marketing. Once I have obtained my degree I would like to study further and work towards getting my MBA and then start up my own PR company.
Who is a previous Miss South Africa who has inspired you and why? Melinda Bam, Miss South Africa 2011, who changed the game by making Miss South Africa more relevant to modern times and leaving a legacy, which she predicted at the start of her reign. Then there is Nicole Flint, Miss South Africa 2009, who, on each occasion I’ve bumped into her, was kind, friendly and humble. She has left her mark on the Miss South Africa Pageant. These women also did respectable charity work, which one could see was real and came from the heart. I aspire to become a Miss South Africa that is the perfect blend of all these amazing qualities.
Who are your role models/who has inspired you and why? Someone who has inspired me and continues to do so is Public Protector, Thuli Madonsela. She is a woman of integrity and perseverance and puts all her focus on the future of South Africa and the dignity of its citizens. Neutral to all political parties, she has become the country’s top fighter in eradicating corruption, and has never stopped sacrificing her time and energy for what she believes is right.
I wouldn’t say I have just one role model; I have a handful of people to whom I look up to. Each of these people has one or two personality and characteristic traits that I admire and try to implement into my own life as I mature.
Tell us a bit more about your family: My father and mother are my pillars of strength. My mother is a self-employed estate agent and my father runs his own construction company. My sisters, regardless of how distant we are in ages, remain close. My eldest sister is 34 and works at an Information Technology firm. My middle sister is 27 and is a qualified physiotherapist.
What do you do in your spare time? In my spare time I model and train hard at gym, where I do a bit of Muaythai and I recently began doing yoga. Other things I enjoy doing is hiking, travelling the world and snorkelling.
What is your message to young girls and young women in South Africa? You are more powerful than you know. This mostly applies to the young women in the world but can be a message to all. Young women in this country, regardless of their background, need to realise their worth and their potential. They need to fight for a better future and for their education. You can’t sit back and wait for things to come to you, you have to go out there and get it. I don’t come from the wealthiest of communities but I never let that determine my success and my dreams. If you want something, you are the only thing holding yourself back. If you don’t get it right the first time, keep trying! I am the perfect example of that – this is my third entry into Miss South Africa. It is what I want, and it’s something I can feel deep inside. If I did not pick myself up and try again, how would I ever be able to show people that with passion, determination and hard work, all your dreams will transpire?
If you won the Miss South Africa crown and were able to meet one person, who would it be and why? I would love to me meet Thuli Madonsela, of course, and soak up all the wisdom and knowledge she has. She has learnt how to remain neutral, humble and how to stay determined and driven no matter how difficult things may get. If the crown was a time travel machine – Nelson Mandela (while he was president) – just to get insight into the mind of someone who changed an entire nation for the better.
What is the one thing people would be surprised to know about you? That I am an ex-dancer and have been for 10 years.
What are you reading? Well the last book I read was Donald Trump’s Think Big.
What is on your iPod? Goodluck – Trickery (And it’s on repeat!)
Your favourite TV show? Modern Family and CSI
Your favourite meal? Basil-pesto baked snapper fillet. It’s yummy.
Anything else you would like to add? If you work really hard, and you are kind – success is inevitable.