East London once again has a stunning candidate in the running for Miss SA, as Homba Mazaleni from Gonubie takes to the stage to compete for the crown later this year.
The only candidate from East London, Mazaleni is a qualified sport scientist and student intern at the University of the Western Cape. She has a bachelor’s degree in human movement science and an honour’s degree in sport science and she’s currently pursuing biokinetics.
The 23-year-old is excited to be taking part in the prestigious pageant and is using her new platform to change lives in SA.
“I’ve seen how much positive influence a person can make when they become a part of the Miss SA family.
“It’s inspirational how much these women achieved, especially when it comes to the social causes they advocate for.
“I want to be a part of that. I want to build on my ideas and meet people who will remodel the way that I think.
“I would use this platform to bring light to the current state of accessibility of health and wellness in low-income areas.
“The most important concept for me coming into this competition is being a social servant. Access to health in SA has always been difficult, especially for those who are socially and economically disadvantaged,” Mazaleni said.
Mazaleni is passionate about making a change in the community, especially in the realm of recreational therapy and uses these skills as part of work she does in under resourced areas with people who cannot access physical rehabilitation services.
She also volunteers at a stroke rehabilitation centre in East London. For Mazaleni, the Miss SA pageant is symbolic of her journey towards self-acceptance.
She said: “The shame I used to carry about being queer and androgynous is something I am not always proud of. Queerness is multifaceted and should have been my source of pride growing up and not my shame.
“My message to young girls is to own who you are and to undermine limitations society has placed on you. Be as expansive, big and as bold as every dream you have had.”
The top 12 finalists will be featured on a TV show called Crown Chasers, a series aimed at showcasing the finalists on their journey as they compete for the crown.
Finalists will be placed in real life Miss SA scenarios that include several challenges based on the four pillars of Miss SA, namely duty, championship, empowerment and beauty.
The crowning will take place at Sun International’s flagship venue, The SunBet Arena at Time Square, Pretoria, on Sunday, August 13.