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Teen Universe SA finalist lives out her Khoi heritage

South Africa - Cape Town - 19 January 2022 - Joey Roman Finalist in Teen Universe South Africa. Pictures: Brendan Magaar/African News Agency(ANA)

South Africa - Cape Town - 19 January 2022 - Joey Roman Finalist in Teen Universe South Africa. Pictures: Brendan Magaar/African News Agency(ANA)

Published Jan 22, 2022

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Cape Town - Khoisan heritage will take centre stage at the Teen Universe South Africa pageant, as Joey Roman will showcase her cultural traditions at the event.

Roman hopes to give her heritage, the Khoisan, a place on stage when she competes for the first time in a professional modelling competition.

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Roman is a self-taught model and will compete against several finalists at Carnival City, Johannesburg, between February 26 and 27.

My heritage is my people - my heritage is those who came before me - my heritage is my freedom,“ Joey Roman wrote on her Facebook page. Voting lines are now open picture Leon Klaaste.

On Heritage Day last year Roman posted a spectacular photograph of herself dressed in Khoisan attire which was taken by photographer, Leon Klaaste.

The outfit had been arranged by founders of Koena Art Institute & KwaaiKhoi Pty Ltd – specialist Khoisan Art, Culture and events, Lukretia Booysen and Jolene Martin.

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Martin had dressed up in the Khoisan inspired outfit in 2018 –which went viral in the entertainment industry – to showcase South Africa’s cultural diversity.

The image of Roman was shared on her Facebook page and it was a hit – the pretty teen did her research well to understand the history of the Khoisan.

Roman matriculated in 2020 and after passing her exams she decided to rewrite subjects and reapply for her career choice – Chartered Accounting.

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My heritage is my people - my heritage is those who came before me - my heritage is my freedom,“ Joey Roman wrote on her Facebook page. picture Leon Klaaste.

On her Facebook post, she proudly wrote that her heritage was her freedom.

South Africa - Cape Town - 19 January 2022 - Mom is Tania Roman with Joey Roman. Joey is a Finalist in Teen Universe South Africa. Pictures: Brendan Magaar/African News Agency(ANA)

Roman is supported by her parents, Jason Roman and Tania Roman. Her personal photographer is her brother, Quwan Roman, and she has younger siblings aged 10 and 1.

The family will be joining her in Johannesburg.

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“They have been there for me from day one and they are my greatest supporters. Who better to have behind you?” she said.

Roman has just one month to prepare for the stage.

She will require specified shoes, clothing attire and make-up.

For her the competition is not just about beauty, but a voice to empower and inspire.

Joey Roman and her father, Jason Roman. supplied image

During her journey, Joey was tasked to carry out charity work and started her own organisation called Joey’s Heart Foundation. She visited the Ark City of Refuge and donated shoe boxes filled with treats and gifts and carried out food distribution for the less fortunate and motivational speaking for the youth.

She is also the brand ambassador for I Like It Most clothing.

“When I watched Demi-Leigh Nel-Pieters being crowned Miss Universe, I fell in love with pageantry,’’ she said.

“For me it was so much more than just about make up and clothes but creating a platform where voices can be heard and raised.

“When I sought to dress up in Khoisan attire, Lukretia reacted to my appeal and post. I carried out my research about the Khoi and my heritage, I didn’t just want to dress up in it.

“Should I make it further in the competition, I want to wear the Khoi outfit and give the Khoi preference on the national stage. For me it is not about winning but the journey and having come so far.”

Tania said her daughter worked hard to achieve her dreams.

“She always excels in what she goes for and we are excited for her journey and to watch her as the young woman she is.”

Her father, Jason, is also a member of the Cochoqua Royal House (Khoi), and said he was proud of his daughter living her heritage.

“I became emotional when Joey said she will be doing the Khoisan shoot as part of her Heritage Day, her tribute.

“In was full of tears too see this young beautiful baby of mine, now a beautiful woman, put on these garments and artefacts of her heritage.

“It brought joy and her heritage is alive. She is a symbol of the next generation taking everything further. She brought her own elegance to it and I am proud of her. I hope that God will always protect her and keep her on the right track.”

Dawn de Villiers of the I Like It Most clothing brand said Roman was a confident young woman who worked hard.

“What an inspiring, beautiful young lady. Not only is she the brand ambassador for “I Like It Most,” she is also a finalist in Teen Universe South Africa, and has Joey’s Heart Foundation and she is so inspiring.

“Her head is on the right path, she knows what she wants out of life, she lives her truth.”

Voting lines opened on Wednesday, January 19. If you want to vote for Roman: SMS “Joey Roman” to 34995.

Weekend Argus

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