Limpopo’s beauty queen, 9, has won more awards than most peers

A young Limpopo girl, Ndaloenhle (Ndalo) Sibanyoni, (9), has represented South Africa on the world stage and crowned the mini Miss Planet Model Grand Prix held in Bulgaria. 

Little Ndalo has always shown an interest in the beauty pageants from a young age, albeit still young. 

Destined from an early age

Her mother Poppy Sibanyoni, 39, said: “my daughter has shown interest in beauty pageants as a toddler at the age of four. She came back from school and put on dresses and baby heels just to watch her favorite beauty programme on TV.  

At four years old, Ndalo came home from pre school and revealed to her mother that she would be taking part in the school’s Valentine’s Day modelling competition. And so, Ndalo’s pageantry journey began.

“I feel really proud and content that I am raising such an independent and responsible young woman who does not only think of herself but her peers and [the] less fortunate. We are hoping that she could encourage others who are also staying in deep rural places such as ours. This is to show that anything is possible as long as you act on your dreams. 

“I’m proud of her achievement, and I’m excited. I feel confident about her”. 

Ndalo’s father, Patrick Sibanyoni, 43, is also devoted and involved in her activities. She is also getting support  from extended family, including grandparents. Her paternal and maternal families are immensely involved in her success and they are proud of her achievements.
Flying the SA flag

Ndalo told Sunday world that she has realised her modeling dream of representing her country on the world stage, flying the South African flag high. “[It really] means a lot to me,” she said. 

The mini-beauty queen has won the best national costume prize, among others. This was when she won the judges over with her beautiful costume. The outfit was designed by local fashion designer Theresa Viljoen.

She has founded a foundation, named the Ndalo Foundation. It advocates for children’s rights, health, education and empowerment. 

First global title

Her first title was Toto Miss Africa South Africa when she was aged just 7. The pageant was first held in Midrand, Johannesburg. The finale was later held in Uganda, where she was first Runner-up. 

Upon her arrival back in the country, she was nominated for the South African Children’s Awards. Here she scooped the Charity Ambassador Award for charity work with her foundation. She was also named the best young Philanthropist and best in modeling. Ndalo also won the Public Choice Award after she had the most votes in the competition. She was cast for the International Casting Fashion Kids (ICFK) as a principal cast member. 

“The pageant is not just a prestige, but one that [you have to] take responsibility and become an ambassador and do charity work. I didn’t get the title and just sit down with it,” said the young beauty ambassador. 

Since then, she has competed in other beauty pageants in the country. She finished in the top three at 2021’s Junior Miss Bopedi Royalty and Junior Miss United Limpopo in 2022.

Coach’s favourite protégé

Her coach Pearl Ngele said  part of her training preparations include weekly training at the Sekhukhune Modelling and Pageantry Academy and ambassador work. All this while juggling  her schoolwork at Laerskool Steelpoort Primary. Here she’s always on top 5 in her grades. 

Ngele described her as a hardworking and determined young girl with great promise for the future. 

Ngele said: “I am proud of her and cannot wait to see what the future holds for her. 

“we always encourage her to prioritise her school work first, and during her leisure time practice what she learnt at training.”

List of awards and accolades
  • First ever title: Miss Tingling Valentine – February 2019
  • Miss Tingling Spring – September 2019
  • Miss Burgersfort Spring Tiny Tots – September 2020
  • Top 5 Junior Miss Mafate – November 2021
  • 2nd Runner-up Junior Face of Atok – December 2021
  • 1st Runner-up Junior Miss Bopedi Royalty – December 2021
  • Junior Miss United Limpopo – February 2022
  • Toto Miss Africa SA: – March 2022
  • 1st Runner up Toto Miss Africa: Uganda – April 2022
  • Top 5 Little Miss South Africa – June 2022
  • Mini Miss Planet SA – August 2022
  • Mini Miss Planet Model Grand Prix winner: Bulgaria – June 2023
Big dreams for the future

Ndalo has big dreams for the future. She see herself as tomorrow’s Miss South Africa, Miss World and Miss Universe. 

The shy beauty queen shared with us her dream of becoming a Gynaecologist specialist doctor. Her her advice to others is to put education first and tire not until they reach their goal of success.

  • By Thomo Nkgadima 

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