by: Tania Theron
Monday, Apr 06 2015
"Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved." - Helen Keller.
When Vicki Fourie was only six months old, she got a fever. This fever took 97% of her hearing, stealing many precious moments from her life.
Vicki was equipped with a hearing aid, but it only gave her 40% hearing. Despite this, she attended school with hearing people. “It is because of my parents’ stubbornness that they put me in an English school, and thanks to them I am now fluent in English and Afrikaans whilst most deaf people can only speak one language. I used to think that my hearing aids were just a normal thing you put on, like using glasses for reading. I still think that way,” says Vicki. She had her first cochlear implant operation in 2013, which gave her about 80% hearing in her right ear. Her second operation is scheduled to happen this year. “In the beginning it was as if worlds opened for me. I couldn’t believe how much I have missed out on. The first time I heard my cat miaau it was a life-changing moment. I can whistle now and hear it. These sounds were too high for me to hear before. I can also speak on the phone and listen to the radio,” she says.
In 2008, Vicki decided to take part in Miss Deaf SA. She did not win. However, she was crowned 1st Princess as well as Miss Personality. She finally got her crown in 2009 when she was crowned Miss Deaf SA 2009/2010. She also got the opportunity to partake in the Miss Deaf International in Las Vegas and was crowned 1st Princess. In 2011, she took part in the Miss Deaf World pageant and it was here that she was approached and offered a movie contract. Unfortunately this never became a reality as they could not get the finance for the movie. Vicki was also in a music video for Straatligkinders for which she had to learn sign language for the first time.
Today Vicki is a motivational speaker. “When I was 14 years old, I was accidently shot with a gun. This accident changed my entire life – in a good way. I started to think less about myself and stopped feeling sorry for myself. Life owes you nothing – it’s your responsibility to make something out of it,” she says. Vicki has also written a few books. “In high school I was always quite lonely. I thought I was alone in the world and the only one who had to face my battles. I found comfort in my bible diary. After I became a motivational speaker, I decided that I wanted to write a diary that could help other people through loneliness. This is how my book God Lief My came about,” says Vicki. Her first book is a memoir titled Viva la Vicki! and she wrote it herself. “I am planning on writing more books, as well as to become involved in the TV and film industry as a scriptwriter and actor whilst still continuing with my motivation talks,” says Vicki.
Vicki is proof that your success does not depend on the cards you were dealt in life. It is up to you to step up and make your life count.
Twitter: @Vicki Fourie
Contact Vicki for motivational talks or for a signed copy of her book: email@example.com