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Por­tia Mogamisi is a self-pro­claimed peo­ple per­son. She start­ed at Maropeng as a clean­er in 2006, and was lat­er recruit­ed as a guide by the for­mer curator.

I love work­ing with peo­ple, inter­act­ing with them and learn­ing from them,” says Portia. 

I espe­cial­ly enjoy meet­ing inter­na­tion­al tourists and telling them about South Africa. They come here with one con­cept about how we are, but I like to show them how wel­com­ing we are. Then they leave with a dif­fer­ent concept.”

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Like all Maropeng’s guides, Por­tia was trained and accred­it­ed with the Gaut­eng Tourism Author­i­ty, but before she start­ed she knew lit­tle about the Maropeng story.

As a devout Chris­t­ian, the the­o­ry of evo­lu­tion was new to her and she admits that at first it was hard to incor­po­rate the new knowl­edge with her under­stand­ing of the world, but now she is con­fi­dent explain­ing it to groups of visitors.

Maropeng Mar­ket­ing Man­ag­er Eri­ca Saun­ders describes Por­tia as an amaz­ing young woman”. 

She has enor­mous inner strength and the poten­tial to be a leader. I have huge admi­ra­tion for her,” con­tin­ues Erica.

Por­tia is a moth­er of two young girls, aged sev­en years and 13 months.

My sev­en year old knows more about Maropeng than most peo­ple. I have a repli­ca of Mrs Ples in my house and when my daughter’s friends come round she tells them all about her,” says Por­tia, laughing.

Orig­i­nal­ly from Mafikeng, Por­tia has a diplo­ma in pub­lic admin­is­tra­tion and man­age­ment and hopes to be able to join the Maropeng admin­is­tra­tion team in the future

I’m cur­rent­ly hav­ing fun in my job, but I know I’ll want to move on one day. I know it’s pos­si­ble, because there are so many oppor­tu­ni­ties here. I’ve learnt noth­ing is impos­si­ble. If you know where you’re going, you just have to fol­low the right steps.”