Blazon Magazine got a chance to chat to Roxy Van Bruwaene, the reigning Mrs Mpumalanga Queen and Zanele Ngwenya, the reigning Provincial Mpumalanga Ms. Both ladies were crowned at a stellar event with lots of glitz and glamour on 30 November 2019 in Nelspruit. Despite corona virus and its effects this year, the ladies have been busy running projects and campaigns to address gender based violence, importance of youth education and many more initiatives.
How has the crown changed your life?
Being crowned as Mrs Mpumalanga 2020 has changed my life forever, it has pushed me out of my comfort zone and has forced me to rise to the occasion. Being a mother of three beautiful daughters, in the world we live in today made me realize I wanted change, change for my children’s future and for girls in our beloved country. And this change could only become tangible once somebody ordinary does something extraordinary. My girls needed a role model and this is why I embarked on this life changing yet phenomenal journey. This year has been somewhat a roller coaster ride of unexpected challenges and victories, never could I have imagined that I would be reigning from behind a computer screen or camera. It has been an ongoing challenge to stay motivated and still effectively make a change.
What are some of the highlights of your journey so far as Mrs Mpumalanga 2020?
My absolute high of 2020 has been Mokibe School in Mpumalanga, with all the ‘screen’ time or airtime should I say, people have had to sit up and take note of what was really going on behind the scenes. The school was in a bad way, derelict to say the least, ever since I got involved in 2019, there have been many empty promises made to parents, pupils and teachers of this school that a new school was being built. Dare I say that the Covid19 pandemic has had a positive effect on the school and because of the sad state of things, the children have had to relocate to a more established facility with appropriate amenities so the building of the new school can now commence.
Being the first Provincial Mpumalanga Ms winner, what legacy do you want to leave?
Somewhere along the way, we must learn that there is nothing greater than to do something for others. It’s understandable that we sometimes think the world’s problems are so big that we can’t do little to help. Yes, on our own, we cannot end wars or wipe out injustice, but the cumulative impact of thousands of small acts of goodness can be bigger than we imagine.
My greatest inspiration is in doing something for the less advantaged, to uplift their lives for the better. Remember, if you ever need a helping hand, you’ll find one at the end of your arm. As you grow older you will discover that you have two hands. One for helping yourself, the other for helping others.
Taking time to help others without expecting a reward or gratitude, is definitely important in living an optimistic life. The impact of changing lives, no matter how big or small is the legacy that I want to leave for the next Queens to follow after me.
What advice will you give to ladies contesting in this year’s pageant?
The Provincial Mpumalanga MS journey is an amazing experience which offers one the platform to unleash their full potential that will lead to a life changing experience for you and for the person you touch. The aim should never be about winning the prize, but should be about the impact you make in the lives of the people you decide to touch and the fulfillment it brings thereafter, because that on it’s own leaves a long lasting legacy even beyond the competition.