Blog Miss South Africa 2020 Shudufhadzo Musida Prioritise Her Mental Health And Herself on COVID 19

Miss South Africa 2020 Shudufhadzo Musida Prioritise Her Mental Health And Herself on COVID 19



A radiant Shudufhadzo Musida has been crowned Miss South Africa 2020 at the glittering pageant finale held for the first time in the Mother City

The 24-year-old – who comes from Ha-Masia in Limpopo – has a Bachelor of Social Sciences in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from the University of Pretoria. She is currently doing her BA Honours in International Relations at the University of Witwatersrand. She will receive R1 million in cash as well as a further R2 million worth of sponsorships and prizes, including the use of a luxury Sandton apartment and a Mercedes-Benz cabriolet for a year.

First runner-up was medical doctor Thato Mosehle (25) from Klerksdorp in the North West who received R250 000 in cash. Second runner-up Natasha Joubert (23), a B Com graduate from Pretoria, Gauteng, collected R100 000.

For the first time in the history of the Miss South Africa pageant, the trio will represent the country at the world’s three most prestigious pageants. Previously, the Miss South Africa Organisation has sent a representative to both Miss Universe and Miss World, but will also now be fielding a candidate to Miss Supranational. It will only be revealed at a later date which contestant will go to which pageant.

Shudufhadzo’s mother, Thandi is a real estate agent and she has a 13-year-old sister Zwonka.

In her Miss South Africa acceptance speech, Musida said: “It took an entire village to get me here and I would like to thank all of you for being my village. I stand here today as your Miss South Africa with immense pride and joy to be representing such a beautiful nation – one of the first Venda women, but certainly not the last – to become Miss South Africa. I stand here as an advocate for educational and economic empowerment of women and children and mental health awareness – honoured to be an ambassador of this beautiful nation.

“Through this platform, I plan to continue and build on the beautiful and powerful legacy left by former Miss South Africa titleholders and continue to carry the baton of woman empowerment that the Miss South Africa Organisation is built on and continues to strive for.

“I plan to bring more awareness to mental health, especially in rural and disadvantaged areas, because I truly believe that we need to work on the mind for any change to come about in this country. I plan to mobilise various stakeholders and the nation so we can bring about educational empowerment through the tackling of issues such as period poverty among young girls, workshops that teach children about the importance of mental health from a young age, and mentorship programmes for young women so they can be empowered to be agents of their own future.

“I will continue the fight against food insecurity in rural communities because children can only be their best at school when their basic needs are met. I believe that all of this will continue the efforts of bringing about economic empowerment in this country as more children will be given a fair chance at becoming active members of the economy through educational empowerment.

“This journey has been one of the highlights of my life – one that I will never forget and will cherish for as long as I live. Before this competition started, I had dreamed of helping women and children, and this platform has made that a reality even before the crown was placed on my head. This platform has not only empowered me, but it has caused a ripple effect that has empowered others too. It has empowered a nation of girls just like me and shows that all dreams are valid irrespective of your background. My life has been changed forever and the lives of the generations that come after me, so for that – Ndo livhuwa.”

The Miss South Africa Play Your Part Ambassador Award 2020 – presented in conjunction with Brand South Africa – was given to women empowerment organisation Sisters in Solidarity which supports women through business development strategies and business registration education workshops.

Founder of Home of Hope for Girls, Mam Khanyi Motsa, was named the Miss South Africa Organisation’s unsung heroine 2020. Proceeds of the sale of the song I Am Woman – performed at the pageant by Sho Madjozi and Ami Faku – will go to the Home of Hope for Girls.

The event, hosted by Nomzamo Mbatha at the Table Bay Hotel and broadcast live on M-Net and Mzansi Magic, was a spectacular affair with entertainment provided by some of the who’s who of the SA music industry including Sho Madjozi, Mi Casa, Ami Faku, Sun-El Musician and Jimmy Nevis.

The Miss South Africa 2020 judges were reigning Miss Universe Zozibini Tunzi, queen of SA talk and radio jock Anele Mdoda, previous Miss South Africa title holder (1996) and businesswoman Peggy-Sue Khumalo, actress and entrepreneur Leandie du Randt and actress Kim Engelbrecht.

Shudufhadzo Musida Acceptance Speech

My name is Shudufhadzo Musida and I am your Miss South Africa 2020. After repeating this phrase more than a 1000 times, it now feels so surreal.

First and foremost, I would like to give thanks to my heavenly Father, God Almighty. Waking up each day and knowing that you were always by my side is enough for me. I stand here now because of all those that came before me. My ancestors who continue to watch over me each day.

I would also like to thank my late grandmother Vho-Marandela for her constant support and prayers while growing up. To my number one cheerleader – my mother Thandi – thank you for being the source of my strength. Your love has moulded me into the woman that I am today. To my aunt Cecelia thank you for teaching me the importance of respect, kindness and hard work.

I would like thank my whole family for always supporting me even when my dreams seemed scary. To my fellow contestants, although this was a competition, the friendships created will last a long time and I will be eternally grateful for having met you. To the Miss South Africa Organisation, what you have pulled off – more especially during Covid-19 – is nothing more than spectacular and truly amazing. Thank you.

It took an entire village to get me here and I would like to thank all of you for being my village. I stand here today as your Miss South Africa with immense pride and joy to be representing such a beautiful nation – one of the first Venda women, but certainly not the last – to become Miss South Africa. I stand here as an advocate for educational and economic empowerment of women and children and mental health awareness – honoured to be an ambassador of this beautiful nation.

I would like to extend a big thank you to the Miss South Africa Organisation and all the amazing sponsors who have made this possible. Through this platform, I plan to continue and build on the beautiful and powerful legacy left by former Miss South Africa title holders, and continue to carry the baton of woman empowerment that this organisation is built on and continues to strive for.

I plan to bring more awareness to mental health, especially in rural and disadvantaged areas, because I truly believe that we need to work on the mind for any change to come about in this country. I plan to mobilise various stakeholders and the nation so we can bring about educational empowerment through the tackling of issues such as period poverty among young girls, workshops that teach kids about the importance of mental health from a young age, and mentorships programs for young women so they can be empowered to be agents of their own future.

I will continue the fight against food insecurity in rural communities because children can only be their best at school when their basic needs are met. I believe that all of this will continue the efforts of bringing about economic empowerment in this country as more children will be given a fair chance at becoming active members of the economy through educational empowerment.

This journey has been one of the highlights of my life – one that I will never forget and will cherish for as long as I live. Before this competition started, I had dreamed of helping women and children and this platform has made that a reality even before the crown was placed on my head. This platform has not only empowered me, but it has caused a ripple effect that has empowered others too. It has empowered a nation of girls just like me, and shows that all dreams are valid irrespective of your background. So to the Miss South Africa Organisation – thank you for showing me – and the nation – the power and the importance of opportunities, mentorships and leadership for women. My life has been changed forever and the lives of the generations that come after me, so for that – Ndo livhuwa.

Interview with Miss South Africa 2020 Shudufhadzo Musida.

Shudufhadzo has a degree in Social Sciences in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from the University of Pretoria. She is currently pursuing a BA Honours in International Relations at the University of Witwatersrand.

What will you do now that you are Miss South Africa?
I am passionate about mental health awareness and the economic and educational empowerment of women and children – especially in disadvantaged communities. In many disadvantaged and rural communities, mental health is often overlooked and disregarded. As such, destigmatising mental health will be at the forefront of my social initiatives as it provides a healthy foundation for issues such as economic and educational empowerment to be tackled successfully. It is more important now more than ever because of COVID-19 to check in on mental health, especially in the education sector with children having to adapt to so many changes in their daily lives, and more so in disadvantaged communities where poverty has been exacerbated.

How did you handle the lockdown due to the Covid 19?
I took the time to prioritise my own mental health and myself. It’s been difficult but you learn to be kind to yourself and remember that these are unusual circumstances and it’s okay not to be okay sometimes. I have been blessed to find peace in this tough time.

What has this time taught you?
It has taught me that I don’t need big victories. Small victories, such as taking an hour out to meditate or complete a task is enough. Sometimes we search for joy when it lies with gratitude for just waking up.

2020 has been a tough year globally. Do you see any positives in what has happened in the past months and weeks?
We got to appreciate human interaction and what the beauty of being outside means. Now we appreciate the beauty of nature and of our loved ones. This has been a return to self.

What do you love about South Africa?
The cultures, the food, the people – the people are everything. Also, our ability to love and find joy in the darkest of times.

What would like to change about South Africa?
The stigma against mental health and the disregard towards gender-based violence.

Who is a previous Miss South Africa who has inspired you and why?
Reigning Miss Universe Zozibini Tunzi inspired me to enter because of her grace and her ability to make a statement without straining her voice.

Who are your role models?
My role models include Michelle Obama, Beyoncé, Toni Morrison, Dr. Phumzile Mlambo-Gcuka and Amina J. Mohammed. They are such strong women with so much grace. They inspire me to be better versions of myself.

Tell us a bit more about your family:
I live with my mother, Thandi (42) who is a real estate agent, and I have a little sister, Zwonka (13) who is in Grade 8.

What do you do in your spare time?
I sing, practice the keyboard and read.

Do you think beauty pageants are still relevant today?
Pageants will always be relevant because they are embedded in our society. They also evolve with the times, so it’s no longer just a showcase of a woman’s beauty but the beauty of her mind too and how she can be of service to others beyond herself.

Name two of your female role models?
Beyoncé and Amina J. Mohammed. They encompass both my potential beings, the powerful singer and the powerful advocate.

What is your message to young girls and young women in South Africa?
Love yourselves first, fight for what you want and for yourself too. But remember fighting doesn’t always have to be loud or vocal – it can be as simple as being silent and choosing to prioritise your peace.

What is the one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
I can sing!

What is the No 1 piece of advice that you would give to your younger self?
Love yourself.

Describe yourself in three words:
Caring, smart, blessed.

What music are you listening to?
Usher, disco, and gospel in the mornings.

What are your favourite TV shows?
Little Fires Everywhere and Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

What is your favourite meal?
Sushi.

Who’s your local and international celeb crush?
Local crush is Trevor Noah (if he is still considered local) and international is Miguel.

What’s your guilty pleasure?
Woolworths caramel centred cupcakes.