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Keaoleboga Nkashe's unique upbringing gives her Miss SA chase a different feeling

Part-time model will use title to expand her love for teaching

Masego Seemela Online journalist
Miss SA finalist Keaoleboga Nkashe hopes to bring change should she win the crown.
Miss SA finalist Keaoleboga Nkashe hopes to bring change should she win the crown.
Image: Supplied.

Miss SA contestant Keaoleboga Nkashe’s passion for teaching is what she will focus her reign on should she win the beauty competition.  

Nkashe is a freelance model, kindergarten teacher and a postgraduate student at Moreland University and is currently studying for a Master’s degree in education. 

Her dedication to teaching saw her moving to Shenzhen, China, in 2019, where she taught English to four to six-year-olds.

Born in Itsoseng, near Lichtenburg in the North West, Nkashe grew up in a close-knit family that comprises her older sister, father and mother.

The 26-year-old’s initial reason to visit China was to take a Sabbatical after tertiary education. She wanted to travel and explore the world but she soon found herself teaching when the pandemic hit. She came back to SA at the beginning of the year.

Nkashe is one of the 10 women who will compete for the Miss SA crown on August 13 at Time Square, Pretoria.

The other finalists are Itumeleng Parage, Luvé Meyer, Lebogang Mahlangu, Luyanda Zuma, Anarzade Omar, Ayanda Thabethe, Ndavi Nokeri, Pearl Ntshehi and Tamsyn Jack.

Who inspires you?

This may sound like a cliché but the women in my life inspire me a great deal, especially my mother. I grew up watching my mother love and nurture the children in my neighbourhood. She would at times "adopt" children who were in need of shelter. My mother inspired me to become a better human being and to give back to other people without expecting anything in return.

What was your family dynamic like?

I was raised in an unconventional home. I lived in two homes. My mother lived in Itsoseng in the North West and my father lived in Boksburg (on the East Rand) in Gauteng. They were in a long-distance marriage that involved a lot of travelling to the North West over the weekends.

My mother made a conscious decision for me to be raised in Johannesburg and then the township because she knew I stood a better chance being in Gauteng than I would with her.

How would you describe yourself in three words?

Creative. Outspoken. Loving.

Image: Supplied.

What makes you unique?

My purpose makes me unique and my ability to combine the gifts that I have been blessed with and use these to better the lives of individuals who I come across.

Why Miss SA?

I saw how big of a platform it is. I ultimately want to become a humanitarian, so being Miss SA will help as a stepping stone to becoming that.

How would you describe your journey thus far?

Incredible. I’ve learnt a lot about myself and the organisation’s core values in the couple of months I’ve been in the pageant. I also have learned quite a lot from the ladies I’ve met during this journey. We are all trying to become better versions of ourselves.  

What are you hoping to do during your reign?

I want to make art education available in disadvantaged communities. I grew up with these available to me because I lived in Boksburg but in Itsoseng such material isn’t provided for the children of the area.

Do you have any secret talent that we don’t know of?

I am a terrific playwright. I received eight awards for my first play in school.

If you weren’t afraid, what would you do?

This is a difficult one because I do everything that I am afraid of. But if I wasn’t afraid, I’d travel each and every single month but that would leave me cash-strapped.

What would you never be caught wearing in public?   

Crocs. Those are hideous.

Where is the best place to collect your thoughts?

In my dreams… that’s where I reflect on my life the most.

What’s that one lesson life has taught you?

Be respectful, whether you agree about something or not. We need to spread more love than hate.  

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