She is known to millions of fans as the lying and scheming Nicole DiMera in the soapie Days of our Lives, but it seems the actress who plays her, Arianne Zucker, is an altogether more public-spirited individual.
Zucker showed her true colours on Friday when she rolled up her glamorous sleeves to lend a hand at a self-help project in the Valley of a Thousand Hills.
The star was visiting the Imbeleko Foundation as part of charity work she does through the LifeCHANGE Leadership Program Africa, which she co-founded five years ago.
The foundation, based at KwaNyuswa Senior Primary, helps grandmothers start their own vegetable gardens. It also runs an after-school care project at the school to help orphans with their homework and other school activities.
“LifeCHANGE focuses on two main cornerstones: leadership and community service,” said Zucker.
“We believe that through serving the community, one can become a better leader. We are teaching communities about the value of serving.”
The visit to the self-help project was filmed and is expected to be aired on the LifeCHANGE website or on a US television station.
“We want to not only teach the audience about serving their communities, but also to show our audience the challenges faced by non-governmental organisations across the world, and how their donations may help in improving the lives of ordinary people, such as the Imbeleko Foundation,” said Zucker.
Her visit was met with great excitement by the foundation’s beneficiaries and pupils at the school, who were dazzled to be meeting a real-life TV star.
“I never thought I would see Nicole (Zucker) in the flesh. I have always seen her on television. With her visit I think our school will see some developments, and our communities as well,” said Nokwanda Mchunu, a pupil at KwaNyuswa Senior Primary.