Marisa Smit was diagnosed as profoundly deaf when she was only 14 months old. With a hearing loss of 145 decibels, doctors and experts confirmed that she will never be able to speak. However, at the age of 17, Marisa was chosen for a Bi- lateral cochlear implant. Not only was she able to hear for the first time; but it marked the moment where her journey began in finding her own voice!
Marisa matriculated from a mainstream school in Cape Town with a distinction in Ballet. Ballet being her first love (the manner in which she could express herself through movement and dance even before she was able to hear) she continued her studies in Dance in New York.
Back home, Marisa was crowned Miss Deaf South Africa in 2019 and has carried this title for 2 years. Currently she preparing to compete in The Miss Deaf World Pageant in Prague later this year.
Watkins welcomes this beautiful, strong and determined young woman as a true ambassador of health, beauty, perseverance and success! Let your voice be heard Marisa!
What is the biggest life lesson you have learnt?
I have learnt that my disability is actually an ability to enable me to read people via their body language and facial expressions.
What is your best characteristic?
My motto was always, in the famous words of Sir Winston Churchill to Never ever give up, but for Miss Deaf World and my future, my refrain is: Be UNSTOPPABLE.
What will be your “DREAM COME TRUE”?
To be a successful businesswoman and to have the courage to see every obstacle as an opportunity.
Name an NGO that is close to your heart and why?
Atlantic Hope is close to my heart because it truly takes a village to raise a child. Any advice of being successful in what you do? I truly believe that every journey starts with the first step and if you want to change, BE THE DIFFERENCE.
What is your favourite Watkins product?
I love the Advanced Night Cream and Rebelle perfume because these products make me feel complete and feminine.