At 22, this Cape Flats meisie has the world at her feet.
Olin-Shae De La Cruz has gone from being a TV presenter and studying journalism and marketing to being a finalist for Miss South Africa 2017.
And the mooi meisie from Wynberg is giving back to her community — this week, Olin-Shae joins her aunt, Venetia Orgill’s non-profit organisation, Discover Your Power, aimed at assisting youth at risk.
Venetia, who lives in Mitchells Plain, is a staunch advocate for women and children’s rights and is also an anti-drug activist.
Olin-Shae currently works for a company called HDI Marketing in Johannesburg, which deals with youth.
Her mother, Karin Ford, says she always knew her daughter “was destined for greatness”.
At 11, Olin Shae was part of the Out of Africa dancing academy and won gold at her first competition.
She would later participate in diving, cross-country, netball, hockey and swimming, all while a pupil at Wynberg Junior School and Westerford High.
In 2014, she did a higher certificate in journalism at City Varsity, following a high-school stint on the SABC3 television show, Which Way.
“There is a word on Olin-Shae’s life, she’s a special child to me in that, I prayed for her and God said he would honour her and that she would speak to the nation, and this is the platform to do exactly that,” Karin says.
“She’s been a very disciplined child, who was committed in her school work. When her father and I got divorced, we had the arrangement I would take her to school and he would fetch her.
“And to keep fit, she would run behind his car because she never had the time to fit in the training, and when she got home, she would do her homework,” the mom smiles.
The brunette beauty kept her entry into Miss SA a secret and was ecstatic to hear she was one of the 26 finalists.
“I didn’t tell anyone I was going to enter because I feared I wasn’t going to make it,” says Olin-Shae.
“When I went to Sun City two weeks ago, I was overwhelmed, I realised the impact and influence (I could have), it really hit me.
“I want to make an impact in eradicating drugs in Cape Town, where I am from, and to inspire the youth to show them anything is possible.”
Venetia says her niece will be working with her for a week, and they will be visiting safe houses in the Overberg area, open a new youth centre in Swellendam, as well as visit schools and crèches in Mitchells Plain.