Name: Nicole Lamberts
Area: Idas Valley, Stellenbosch, Western Cape
Occupation: I’m currently going into my final, honours year of B. Occupational Therapy. I’ve just completed my 3rd year of the degree and am studying at the Tygerberg Medical Campus, a division of Stellenbosch University. Occupational therapy helps reintegrate people back into society by using medical-based treatments.
Previous beauty competitions/pageants won: Miss Stellenbosch 2012 and Miss Veet 2013
Why do you want to be Miss South Africa and what do you think you will be able to bring to the role? I want to be Miss South Africa because I have a burning passion for my country and, more specifically, for its citizens. I would be proud to stand tall as a leader in our diverse country with its unique individuals, striving for a bright future in which we can all thrive. I want to be a role model not only for women and children but for men as well. I want to be someone that the people in my community can be proud of and to give them the hope that we can all achieve bigger and better things in our lives by believing in our dreams. No matter how tough the going gets, we must stay confident. There is diversity in me which, I believe, will help connect me with the whole country. I want to bring to this platform the dynamics of occupational therapy which carries the message of individual independence.
Who is a previous Miss South Africa who has inspired you and why? Every Miss South Africa brings unique characteristics to their reign and each titleholder has the characteristics to inspire, which I believe is a prerequisite for the competition. Every year I am inspired by them in different ways. My favourite Miss South Africa is Jo-Ann Strauss. She stood tall and achieved great things in her life. She left her mark with many initiatives, including the Princess Project, which gave young women the opportunity to attend their Matric dance. She also came from Cape Town, studied at the University of Stellenbosch and appears to have a family just like mine; warm and loving. I feel I can relate to her and she motivates me. I also love Melinda and Rolene too. There is Melinda’s passion, confidence and drive and Rolene’s sweet soul and pure heart. It’s all inspiring!
Who are your role models/ who inspired you and why? My father Hilton is my biggest role model. I am lucky to be able to speak to him on a daily basis when I need advice. He is also a man who is passionate about change and enjoys thinking big and outside the box. He inspired me when I was growing up and taught me the beauty of little things in life such as trust and respect, working hard and playing hard. He told me to let go of grudges and never be held back by things of the past.
Tell us a bit more about your family: I live with my family in the same house in which I was born. Many of my friends come from broken homes and I know how blessed I am to have a strong family unit who is supportive and caring, and we are all living under one roof. They have given me the foundation I need to prosper and the stability I need to grow into a well- rounded woman. My dad, Hilton, is in the engineering business and works as a technical trainer at Appletiser. My mother, Yolanda, comes from Mitchell’s Plain, Cape Town, and is a home executive. She is a breast cancer survivor and a strong woman of God who stopped working after my sister Kayler was born. Kayler is 16 and attends Rhenish Girls High School, Stellenbosch. We are a huge family. My mom and dad have many brothers and sisters and we love getting together on holidays and making lots of food and desserts and eating till our tummies hurt.
What do you do in your spare time? I enjoy spending time with my friends and family and I love to travel. I’ve been lucky to have had the opportunity to travel through Europe and to parts of the United States. I don’t have much time off as I’m always studying. The only books I read are on child development or text books on anatomy. I have also started making bracelets through a technique called macramé. It’s something I learnt in my first year in therapy techniques, which I apply to the patients we deal with in the communities. I love to spend time outdoors, going to the beach or hiking up Lions Head. I enjoy being close to nature and absorbing natural vitamin D from the sun and keeping fit and active through gym and Pilates.
What is your message to young girls and young women in South Africa? My message is a simple one. It’s something I was told on the last day of high school – you are the creator of your own happiness. Happiness is a state of being and relies on no one but yourself. Once you can find your happiness, no one can take that from you, no matter who they are, or in what situation you find yourself. Embrace who you are and let it shine. Don’t be afraid of how high the sky is; instead soar through it and go as high as you possibly can. Wear a parachute so that you’re always safe, but spread your wings with confidence. Live your best life and always be in pursuit of happiness.
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 meet Dr. Aaron Motsoaledi, the Minister of Health. I think it would be perfect because I am studying a health science and have spent a lot of time in government hospitals working and gaining practical experience. It would be an amazing opportunity to discuss my view and aspects concerning the health situation in South Africa and more specifically my speciality subject, occupational therapy, and the role it can play in empowering our people.
What is the one thing people would be surprised to know about you? One thing that people will be surprised about me is that I love collecting spoons; interesting spoons and those that my grandma has treasured over the years. I brought back spoons from my travels abroad. It’s different and a quite surprising hobby of mine.
What are you reading? I’m currently reading articles on the prevalence of movement disorders in pre-school children on the West Coast, in the Western Cape, and its impact on learning and on various other aspects of these children’s lives. These readings are all for my literature review, for my honours research in occupational therapy paediatrics.
What is on your iPod? I don’t have an iPod but I bought a few CDs a couple of days ago! I think the last time I bought a CD was when I was a teenager. At the moment I’m listening to Jack Johnson and Cafe del Mar which is very mellow
What is your favourite TV show? I don’t watch television that often but I have to admit I love 7de Laan.
What is your favourite meal? I enjoy eating a good home-cooked meal made by my mother, she’s the best cook. I enjoy a Sunday lunch roast and every now and then a good old tjoppie on the braai.
Anything else you want to add? I am very much a people’s person. I am agreeable and I love to learn about other people, their cultures and their way of living. I am intrigued by how the mind works. I’m passionate about what I do every day and about my future and am blessed to have the ability to lead without a title. I like being a motivational speaker like Robin Sharma who talks about someone who lives by the motto of taking your limitations and turning them into an opportunity, then taking that opportunity and turn it into an adventure by dreaming big!