The new 'Girl from Ipanema' following Gisele's footsteps

(CNN)At the age of 21, Bonang Matheba drew up a list of all the things she wanted to achieve in the entertainment industry.

Over the years she has ticked numerous achievements off her list including hosting two South African lifestyle television shows and DJing for a commercial radio show.
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Now, as she nears her 30th birthday, Matheba has made her mark as the first African ambassador for Brazilian shoe brand Ipanema.
    As African brand ambassador, the South African media personality will be following in the footsteps of Brazilian supermodel Gisele Bündchen.
    "Ipanema wanted to find a girl who's a fashion icon but a girl you can relate to, someone that feels like your next door neighbor," says Matheba.
    "Bonang's just the right person to put our shoes on," adds Donny Christoforakis, managing director at footwear distributors Intershu. "She's self-made, vibrant, fun," he says.

    Breaking through

    This is not Matheba's first big break, it's one in a series of many. In 2013, Matheba made history as the first South African to be chosen as a brand ambassador for Revlon.
    Matheba attends New York Fashion Week in September, 2016.
    "A little black girl from Mafikeng could never imagine it being possible," she says, referring to the city in which she was born in the North West Province of South Africa.
    This year the model hosted the MTV Africa Music Awards after South African comedian and host of The Daily Show Trevor Noah pulled out at the last minute.
    "After the awards, people were saying I'm one of the best TV hosts on the African continent," Matheba says.
    "That was the moment I realized I'm good. I'm very good and I'm about to get even better, God willing."

    Queen of Africa?

    Matheba also took to the stage as host of the All Africa Music Awards in Lagos, earlier this month.
    "This year has really positioned me as the Queen of Africa," Matheba says.
    Scaling the ladder to stardom in South Africa, and branching out into Africa, has not been a straightforward climb, particularly with social media trolls she explains.
    But Matheba believes in rising above the negativity. "I think anybody that knows me knows my rules -- silence has a lot of power," she says.
    "I get so much more love that I'd rather focus on, than all the negative stuff. So 90% of my time and concentration really goes into focusing on the people that support and love me. I don't deal with trolls."

    'The blessings can't stop with me'

    "I'm at a stage in my life where the blessings can't stop with me. The blessings have to be paid forward," she says.
    This was the stimulus for the Bonang Bursary whereby, each year, Matheba funds 10 young school-leavers through their tertiary education.
    "Education has a generational domino effect where if you empower one young woman in a family, she has the power to empower the rest of her family."
    Right now she wants to continue her reach across the continent and beyond.
    "At the beginning of the year I realized I've done everything that's possible in South Africa, I needed to find Africa, I needed to find the world, and I'm doing that one step at a time."