She is bold. She is daring. She takes on life's turns and twists with a robust movement ahead and a stance of "I am still here!"....And that is the title of her book ...."I am still here". A speaker open about her HIV status, she shares her experiences and talks about postive living despite life challenges with a true affirmative drive in life lessons for all those affected by HIV, a global epidemic.
Tell us what drives you? What is your true passion in life?
Takes a deep breath…..
The desire to be the best in what I do, being able to help other people through my life experience and influence behavioural changes and helping people making more informed decisions.
My passion is to empower, bring hope to people and help them realize their purpose. Make people realize the power they hold and have to achieve anything they want to regardless of their life circumstances.
How did you find your passion and how old were you?
My mess is my message that is one sentence I use when I talk about my passion and purpose……in my pain I found my purpose.
I have been at my death bed many times, and that helped me find my passion in life. The life I led in making uninformed choices which lead to me to getting infected with HIV.
What about your passion appeals to you the most?
Being able to help people with the little I have, using my story to change lives and to make a positive impact, being able to influence behaviour change through my story. Seeing myself as a mirror of hope appeals to me the most.
What drove you to make money from your passions?
When I started back in 2015, It was just about sharing my story, I did not know that speaking is a possible career or an art that one can get paid for, so I would just go to places and share my story.
Till one day I was listening to a speaker at a conference in Sandton. It was Tony Gaskins from USA and he said ….‘ Your passion should be turned into your payslip” – that got me thinking, I then started asking other speakers, but I also had the opportunity to attend a speaking class with the UNWOMEN, that helped in improving my art and knowing when were and how to charge.
When was the first time you were paid for your passion?
The first time I got paid was in 2014 for a Primedia. I was called in to do a talk for the staff to commemorate World AIDS Day. I shared my story followed by a powerpoint presentation with factual information on HIV.
What kept you going when you thought about giving up?
My daughter and my mom are my biggest reasons for not giving up. I want to be a living example to my daughter.
I want her to see me succeeding against all odds which I pray will make her believe that she can be and do anything she wants to do in life. Also, I need not give up cause I need to give my mom all her hearts desires.
What motivates you every day to be even more successful?
My past is my biggest motivation, knowing that I can become anything I want to be if I put all the work and push hard. People I look up to who keep doing great things in their lives and other peoples lives despite they backgrounds.
Just llike Oprah Winfrey, we all know her, where she comes from and where she is now. And I believe I am the next Oprah of South Africa.
What do you have to say to all of the people who doubted you?
With time I have learned that it is ok when people do not understand your dreams, and that is why a lot of people tend to doubt us is because our dreams do not make sense to them or at the time it is because of the fear they have to succeed.
All I can say is thank you for doubting me, having negative comments also makes me pursue them even more. I simply want to prove myself and your wrong. But thank you.
What advice do you give to aspiring creative's who look up to you?
Your current circumstances do not determine nor should they make a negative impact on your future. You have every tool you need to become whatever you dream to become. Do your research, find a mentor, ask questions and learn something new every day…THE WORLD IS YOURS AND PUSH UNTIL SOMETHING HAPPENS.