JETHRO JAFTHA student by day model by night

Jethro, (22) who grew up and still currently lives in Bridgetown in Athlone Cape Town, is a model who is making some waves in the industry with his unique photographic model works and catalogue jobs in South Africa.

He started modeling because he felt like his parents were not able to hand down a lot of pictures of them-selves down to him when they were younger. He then thought that it would be cool to give his own kids a different experience one day. 

His father (Paul Jaftha) is from Cape Town and he has lived here all his years, his father was a public figure in District Six. Jethro’s mother is from the Northern Cape and has Khoi decent. Now we know where he gets his amazing unique look.

Jethro labels himself as Khoi instead of coloured because it is with pride that he can say that his ancestors were one of the first people to have made Cape Town their home. 

He attended Blossom Street Primary and then later attended Bridgetown High School. After school, Jethro studied Veterinary Science. However after two years he changed to Civil Engineering – which he is currently studying at UNISA.

Jethro enjoys being outdoors and enjoys surfing, kayaking or and hikes up Lions Head.

He also loves wine and finds the process of making wine really interesting, It reminds him of the struggle that his forefathers had to go through in order to just make enough money to put food on the table.

He looks up to social media personalities and influencers such as Scott Disick and Will Smith, as to how they have used their platform to create a business for themselves.

RUAN: You were bullied as a child and struggled with bullying since a very young age “because you looked different to other children” in your neighbourhood. How has this formed you into the person you are today?

JETHRO: After going through this experience I have developed a sense of self-confidence; I have turned this thing that can be so negative and challenging into something positive. I have had to do research on what I was experiencing and had to understand how to overcome my challenge. 

This can made me so much more resilient, I no longer feel hurt when someone does something that would intentionally hurt me, and believe me I still have people trying to test my character everyday, and I have learnt how to be a better person by not having someone who has negative intentions hurt me anymore. I had to be tough and just make the most of what I had, this had lead me to modelling and I havegained my confident from there.

RUAN: This unique look is what has made you one of the future stars on modelling and you have turned years of advertising into pursuing your passion and making a career from modelling.

JETHRO: Yes, this has helped me make my mark, I worked really hard for all that I have so far and I am far from finished, I would like to achieve so much more and this is only possible if I continuously push my career to where I want it to be.

RUAN: What advise can you give to other struggling youth who is constantly bullied on a daily basis?

JETHRO: I would advise people who are going through something as daunting as bullying to just keep strong and not stop what they are doing, people are bullying them for a reason and this reason is nothing you should try and shy away from. This reason, whatever it may be, makes you who you are. If people are bullying you because of who you are then they have a problem with their character and you are not the one with the problem so keep your head high and make sure you are smiling when all you really want to do is cry.

RUAN: You are currently a Civil Engineering student – which you are currently studying at UNISA. So basically a student by day and a model outside of that serious career – getting to enjoy the best of both passions to it’s equal opportunities. How important is having an education?

YETHRO: Yes, I am currently studying Industrial Engineering part-time at Unisa and this is not something that comes easy. I know that I need to have something that I need to fall back on when I am no longer able to model. I need to focus on keeping up with the times and making sure that I can sustain a good quality of life. This is one thing that I have learnt growing up.

RUAN: How do you balance being a student and a model?

JETHRO: It is extremely difficult. The hard part is trying to schedule time to study on a Saturday when you think you’ll be free and then only finding out that you were booked for a shoot on Saturday. It’s not easy but I have started making specific goals for myself and sticking to them, for example trying to study for 25 minutes 5 days a week to ensure that I am where I should be with my studies.

RUAN: After only two years as a model you have already booked jobs for Adidas, Louis Vuitton and Moncler. Would you say that has been some of your best accomplishments?

JETHRO: It has yes, the only thing is once I have booked something this big I keep on asking myself “Okay, what’s next” so I never linger too long on my wins however I focus on what my future wins will be.

RUAN: You have also appeared in magazines such as Port Magazine, Cake Magazine and Out Magazine. Which other magazines would you like to be features in?

JETHRO: I would really love to do a bunch of South African magazines as well as most of my work has been for international brands. So it would include glamour SA, GQ SA, Men’s Health SA and Cosmo SA.

RUAN: You recently booked a shoot with a popular international magazine for China/Japan – which will be published later this year. Can you share more with us about it and what we can look forward to?

JETHRO: Yes, it should be published in the June/July edition. I have another job that I worked on for a production company and they would be sending it around to different publishers however I am not really able to say anything else, I guess we’ll just have to watch my social media for updates.

RUAN: What other projects will you be working on for the remaining 2019?

JETHRO: I am planning on working on as much projects as possible however we won’t be able to mention much of it at this point, however with the season that is coming up I am hoping to book a bunch of work with some of South Africa’s biggest and boldest companies.

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