An exclusive interview with Miss World Namibia, Tina Haimbala

Albertina Haimbala also known as ‘Tina’ is 23 years old Miss World Namibia. She studied marketing management at the university of science and technology.

What is your earliest recollection from your childhood years?
My earliest recollection from my childhood is the year I received a scholarship when I was in the 8th grade. That was the greatest year of my life because I got to attend my dream high school

Can you kindly share insights about your family background?
I grew up in a family of 8 including myself. My mom, dad and my 5 siblings on a lodge called Mount Etjo Safari Lodge. I have 2 differently abled sisters who means the world to me. They are the main reason why I advocate for the differently abled children.

Within your family, was there a strong emphasis on the importance of education?
Yes, my parents never got the opportunity to get an education. My older sister was born with a disability and never got a chance to go to school as well. This makes me the first in my family to complete high school and get as far as tertiary level. My younger sister will soon join me next year and will be the second in our family to get to tertiary level.

Can you tell us about your work with persons with disabilities?
My mission in life is to create a world where equality thrives. My aim is to raise money and donate wheelchairs and needed equipments to the needing child. Have conversations with different community leaders to see if we can create an inclusive society for all. Have campaigns that will break stigma around differently abled people.

What’s your personal opinion about our attitude as Namibians towards supporting people living with disabilities?
Growing up with 2 differently abled sisters I realised it’s not their inability to function that holds them back but it’s how society treats them. There is a high stigma on the differently abled people. We view them with a judgmental eye and not an accepting one. I also realized that these people need the right support in order to be able to contribute to society. One of my favorite success stories is Stephen Hawking. A big name in the world of Science. If he was able to accomplish what he accomplished in a wheelchair and a speaker machine, how much more can our people achieve. They just need the right support.

Tell us about your Foundation?
My foundation focuses on creating awareness and breaking the stigma around people with disabilities and uplifting young minds through fun and educational activities. I believe that it is not poverty that kills a child’s dream but rather the lack of true and genuine support.

Can you kindly narrate your educational journey, highlighting the various qualifications you’ve obtained from different institutions?
Thus far, Marketing management is the only qualification I have. My plan is to endeavor into modeling and add a personal training certificate to my qualifications.

Was marketing always your first choice of study?
No, I wanted to study aviation. It has always been a dream of mine to become a pilot. That dream is not dead yet because I plan on going to a flight school at a later stage in my life.

Having experienced both local and international educational systems, could you provide a comparative analysis of these systems and elucidate how they have contributed to your personal development?
International education system involves a concept of a broad range of learning like exchange programs, training, specialization and cross cultural communication while local educational system is responsible for providing public elementary and secondary education.
Both educational systems have contributed a great amount of knowledge and expertise to my life.

Please walk us through your passion for fitness?
I’ve been an active kid since I can remember. I was a track runner from when I was in the 4th grade up until the 11th grade. I stopped due to an ankle injury that limits my ability to sprint. My journey to being a fitness enthusiast started in 2020 when I joined the gym for the first time, since then I’ve never looked back.

What comes first for you; beauty or fitness?
Fitness comes first for me, because I believe it promotes and enhances beauty.

Your evident interest in beauty pageants is noteworthy. What has driven you to participate in beauty pageants?
Beauty pageants provide a platform that empowers women in so many different aspects. It allows women to fully embrace their potential and make a difference in their respective communities. Beauty pageants also help with building confidence and life long connections.

What inspired you to participate in Miss Namibia?
Miss Namibia in an organization that promotes beauty with a charitable cause, and I’ve always wanted to make a difference in my community.
I want to be a seed of hope for the hopeless and a voice for the voiceless. Miss Namibia is the perfect organization to guide me through my journey and help me achieve my purpose.

Can you describe your journey as the First Runner Up so far.
My journey thus far has been nothing but a blessing. I’ve prayed to be where I am today and all I can say is that I’m living in my answered prayers.

How are your preparations for Miss World so far?
I have approximately a year to prepare for Miss World. This is because I will represent Namibia at the Miss World competition next year. I’m preparing in such a way that the journey will go smoothly so I can make my country proud.

As somebody who will be participating in Miss World to represent Namibia, how confident are you about bringing the crown home?

Miss World is a pageant that focuses on beauty with a purpose. This is in alignment with my goal in life. I want to live a purposeful life with a positive impact. I believe that Namibia will get a chance to show the world what we can offer with such a prestigious crown and title as Miss World.

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