Miss Eagle South Africa 2018 Finalist, Shelly Tebele is driven by the hunger and thirst to develop her community (Riba-Cross) basically about creating and helping to develop a much better community, more focused and dedicated young people who are determined.
We sat down with Shelly Tebele to know more about her life.
Tenacity Magazine: Where were you born and bred?
Shelly Tebele: The 24 years old Shelly was born and bred in Riba-Cross village, the village surrounded by the beautiful mountains of Ga-Malwane, Ga-Riba and where the sun shines from the ever flowing rivers of Ga-Madiseng, this village is located between Driekop and Burgersfort, on the famous road of R37 to Lydernburg.
I was raised by both my parents in a lovely and close family of and me being the 7th one (five sisters, one brother and my twin-sister) and I’m not saying I’m the last born, we are twins so we are the last born. Although we lost our father last year (2017) October, the family remains tight as ever, the bond grows stronger by the minute and of course amazing and supportive.
Tenacity Magazine: Tell us about your educational background, where did you attend school? And your tertiary?
Shelly Tebele: There is a primary school, this school has advanced to a point of unrecognisable and I am proud of it, Riba Primary School is where I did my primary school from grade 1-7. And thereafter, I did my secondary school at Lehlaba Secondary School. This is the school among many more best schools that has produced doctors, engineers, models and teachers.
In 2012, I enrolled at Tshwane North College in Pretoria, I don’t even know why I was there because the place was not for me the fact that I was far from home I really did not like it. I had to adjust to the fact that a lot of things were about to change.
Then, I moved to Polokwane and enrolled at the University of South Africa and studied law till 2017, then graduated this year 2018.
Tenacity Magazine: You are part of Basadi Modern Movement (BMM), tell us more about this movement, what is it all about?
Shelly Tebele: Amongst the years of me finding myself and what I’m good at, my sister (Pheladi Tebele) started an organisation that was about helping people and she asked me to be part of it, then the passion in me to help people grew stronger.
Basadi Modern Movement values and regards women as the weapon to eradicating poverty. Basically, if women were to respect and dream big just as they should, not to undermined by society, this nation will prosper.
Tenacity Magazine: What can you tell us about your modelling journey?
Shelly Tebele: Firstly my modelling career was inspired by a lady from the Limpopo Province, Bokang Montjane, I told myself that if she could do it, so can I, then I just knew that my province has potential in young great minds that are capable.
Back in high in school, there used to be a platform for modelling, were young girls who wanted to take part were given a chance to do that. However, my mom wanted a very much focused child, the only activities you were to take part it, needed to be the ones that were about building your character; debate, drama etc., She did not see how a being in a bikini was building up your character, so it was a NO.
It was only in 2016, when I was in varsity that I had to prove to her that I can actually balance my studies and modelling and excel in both. Then I became Miss Burgersfort Public Choice 2016.
In 2017, I entered the most challenging pageant of all time, Miss Justice Pageant South Africa. Why challenging? The idea of visiting school, where you come across young different people with different characters was a challenge itself now having to teach them about morality was another challenging, however it was a success because at the of the day it was character that was being build. I became Miss Justice Pageant South Africa 1st Runner up 2017.
Then there is Miss Eagle South Africa (MESA). Everything I did and that I still do has brought me into the hands of MESA, I’m talking about strong character building, public speaking, mentor and motivational speaker. The greatest gift I had in me and still do was to “believe in myself”.
Miss Eagle South Africa is by far the first biggest beauty with brains online contest with over 500 000 followers and it had over thousands and thousands of applicants, the down to few hundred, yet it was still hard because you were competing with people you did not even engage with, it is better to know what your opponents are capable of, but that is the best part of it because you tend to focus on yourself being the best.
At the beginning of MESA, everything was blur, on how the completion was going to turn
out, since it is online, and do we even trust the co-ordinators since its online, and apart from that, people started to doubt it, my friends started to question it and I don’t blame them because it was a bit confusing for me too, but my family just said to me “you started this, and you we are going to finish it, there is no pulling out of this, there is nothing to lose but more to gain”.
And I have to say that coming down to me being a Miss Eagle South Africa finalist 2018, has not only tested my patience, but challenged my ability to perform exceedingly, my dedication, commitment, team-work and trust me if it wasn’t for the amazing support I have from family to friends and fans, I wouldn’t be here. And I will continue to represent my province, my people I will do it with pride.
Tenacity Magazine: Please kindly tell us how do people get to vote for you in the Miss Eagle South Africa pageant?
Shelly Tebele: Well, they can simply SMS SHELLY to 35334. Their support is highly appreciated.
Tenacity Magazine: What are you hoping to achieve?
Shelly Tebele: Apart from the fact that I need to uplift my community, it is definitely for my hard-work, talent and dedication to be recognised. I have worked so hard to be this far.
Through Miss Eagle South Africa, the potential of my community should be recognised, my sponsors should assist young minds where we lack, and also have my own organisation that will look after orphans/homeless people where they will be equipped with skills that will work for them in order to look after themselves since the rate of unemployment in our country increases every day. Amongst many things a library is a need, including sports and recreational centres.
Tenacity Magazine: What are your highlights in your career?
Shelly Tebele: The most important highlight of my life was when I was chosen as Miss Burgersfort Public Choice, simple terms, I was chosen by the public, people believed in me and my hard work.
Tenacity Magazine: What are your future plans?
Shelly Tebele: Well, Uthando Foundation is the name of the foundation I hope to have someday. I would also like to have an education programme that will be about both informal and formal education which will include modelling as a career.
Tenacity Magazine: What do you want the nation to know about you?
Shelly Tebele: I am an outgoing person, but in most cases with family, I love interacting with new people. I have never been out of the country and that scares me, I appreciate friendship. I’m bubbly and forever smiling although some says I am unapproachable.
Tenacity Magazine: What advice would you give for someone who want to follow in your footsteps?
Shelly Tebele: The journey you are about to embark on is not an easy one, it’s not about how many followers you have on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter or the fans you have, it’s about what you give to your people at the end of the day.
It is about you not losing yourself in the process, it is about you maintain the your dignity and self-respect, reminding yourself every morning why you started. You might across much greater challenges than mine, maintain your status and know how to fight your battles “on your knees” and I wish you all the best in your journey.
Tenacity Magazine: How do you define what you do?
Shelly Tebele: “The lives that I touch will be my legacy”