By Khuthala Nandipha
East London business woman Joanne ‘Jo’ Jackson has made it into the semi-finals of the 2020 edition of the Tammy Taylor Mrs South Africa. The pageant is open to married women between the ages of 25 and 50. Jackson is the reigning Mrs Eastern Cape 2019.
Jackson is the owner of the Jo Jackson dance company and Promotions in Nahoon which offers pole fitness, hip hop, freestyle, social Latin as well as personal training for weight loss for people. Children from the age of 3 can enrol at the dance company.
The semi-finalists will embark on a four months journey of mentorship programs, raising funds for Women4Women South Africa and conducting media interviews.
Only 25 women will be selected to be finalists, and they will be announced on June 26 in Gauteng. The finals will be held in November, 2020.
The competition features married women with careers, families, and hobbies and are glamourous and sophisticated. According to the organisers, Mrs South Africa pageant is about giving South Africa’s unsung superwomen a chance to get support and a platform to reach a new level of success and visibility on a global stage.
“I entered the pageant because I wanted to show other ladies my age that even though we are married with children and careers, we can still go after your dreams,” said the mother of four. Jackson has been running her dance company in East London for 18 years.
“It feels awesome to have made it into the semi-finals. I am completely out of my comfort zone, but because of that, I am growing as a person. I have to build platforms to bring attention to women’s rights,” said Jackson.
She is also involved in a dance for life project at local townships and informal settlements where she teaches underprivileged girls how to dance.
“Once a month I go into the township in the morning and teach 20 girls dance, principles. We have a meal and basically have a fun morning. If any of the girls stand out with undeniable talent, we take her further into competitions and get her funding,” she enthused.
The winner will walk away with prizes to the value of R1 million, including a brand new car.