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10 Questions For: Vanessa Lynch

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10 Questions For: Vanessa Lynch

After her father’s brutal murder, this inspiring local activist set about revolutionising crime investigation in South Africa by raising awareness about the importance of DNA evidence in solving cases

1.  How would you describe what you do for a living?
My husband would argue that what I do does not bring in enough money for us to live and he would rather see me go back to my previous career as a commercial lawyer. But then he does also understand that I would rather be doing what I do now than anything else. I am passionate about fighting crime with science, which means pressurising the government to fully support the phenomenal power DNA evidence has in resolving crimes and exonerating the innocent. I am an activist for positive change.

2.  What is your most vivid childhood memory?
When I was a child, we lived opposite an open veld and river, where my brothers and I played freely on a daily basis (except for when the veld fires raged or the river overflowed). The only rule was that we had to come home before dark. It was a boundary-less existence within the boundaries of a close-knit family. 

3.  If you could invite any three people, dead or alive, for dinner, who would they be and why?
My father, because when I was growing up, sitting around the dining room table at dinnertime was non-negotiable and it was here that I learnt so many life lessons, most of which I have applied more often since my father's death than I did whilst he was alive. Dinner was also a time when my father would recite poetry and teach me how to complete crossword puzzles after the plates had been cleared – such simple pleasures.

Then, I know everyone probably says Nelson Mandela, but I would definitely invite him too. Who wouldn't want an opportunity to sit with such an extraordinary statesman and leader?

Finally, my late grandmother, Nana Sylvia. She was the most entertaining, contentious, outrageous woman I have ever known. There was always some kind of spectacular drama when she was around. She never failed to surprise, amuse or infuriate people (in extreme measures), and no one could ever forget her (not always for the right reasons though). Very few people can be all that at once!

4. If you ever found yourself auditioning for a music reality TV show, what song would you sing and why?
I would simply refuse to sing. I have been told I am tone deaf, and I believe you should stick with what you are good at!

5.  How would you complete this sentence?  
The South African cabinet should include a Minister of _________.
…I think a child should be represented in government in lieu of another minister. Children manage to see the world in a simple, uncomplicated and refreshing way. They would act as the quintessential character in The Emperor’s New Clothes: they’d tell our government how it is – all truth bared.

6.  What would you say is the biggest misconception about you?
I doubt there is any. I am so blatantly straightforward and honest that most people struggle more with my lack of tact than they do with feeling that they have misread me in any way.

7.  What is your (honest) opinion of Cape Town?
My brother was visiting from Kuwait recently and he asked me whether the men in Cape Town work at all. He said that every café he visited was full of men drinking coffee at all times of the day. So based on that, let's say that we have great coffee, a surplus of men and lots of time on our hands.

8.  What's the greatest fear you've had to overcome to get where you are today?
I can't think of anything I’ve feared, but I have had to overcome adversity to get to where I am today. My father's murder was the most tragic, heart-wrenching thing I have had to deal with to date, but it has made me who I am today. I could never say I would not change what happened if I could, but because it did happen, I now know that this is what I was meant to do with my life. It’s when you are at your lowest that you learn that you can do the most extraordinary things.

9.   What's the one thing you'd like to achieve before you die?
Maintain my good health. When you are healthy, you can do anything; without health, that becomes a lot more difficult.

10.  Which well-known South African personality would you, without a doubt, be able to beat in a street fight and why?  
Helen Zille. Only because I am younger than her and grew up with three brothers.

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ABOUT #CapeTownMag10Q:

CapeTownMagazine.com’s 10 Questions project gets to know some of the Mother City’s most creative and inspiring people. From television personalities and musicians to politicians and entrepreneurs, we find out more about well-known and up-and-coming Capetonians. You can follow #CapeTownMag10Q on Twitter and Facebook to track recent interviews or read more here about our other awesome 10 Questions candidates

A FEW OF OUR OTHER 10Q CANDIDATES:

10 Questions For Cape Town IGER Mike Eloff

10 Questions For Slow Drive Magazine Guillaume Marias and Nadia Krige

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Vanessa Lynch was also featured in our 2015 Fearless Females Woman's Day article, which aims to highlight six trailblazing Mother City ladies. Read more here about Cape Town's Fearless Females.  

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Cape Town Events Calendar
April 2017
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The Social EventThe Social at the Jolly Carp Organic Market

Spend your Saturday with great music, a beer and a braai

The Taste of Darling FestivalThe Taste of Darling Festival

Experience Darling at the most vibrant, tasty and welcoming festival of the year

Elgin Cool Wine and Country FestivalElgin Cool Wine and Country Festival

Join in the merriment at Elgin Valley’s annual food and wine fiesta

Grassy Spark - 3Five Years of Grassy Spark

It’s their birthday, and we cannot wait to celebrate with these local lads!

The Backyard Grill Lounge RibsBBQ Ribs Special at The Backyard Grill Lounge

Savour succulent, sticky ribs for just R150 per kilogram on Wed, Sat and Sun

Sneaker Exchange Cape TownSneaker Exchange Cape Town

Sneakerheads from far and wide are invited to buy, sell or trade their favourite kicks at Africa’s leading sneaker bartering event!

The Noordhoek CrushThe Noordhoek Crush Wine Festival

Gather the family for a nearby fiesta in celebration of the grape

Pride and Prejudice - 1Pride and Prejudice Screening at Knorhoek Wine Estate

“Have you no consideration for my poor nerves?”

FanCon Cape TownFanCon: Cape Town Comic Con

The Western Cape gets its own version of the famed convention in May

Kaapse Stories at The Rockwell Theatre“Kaapse Stories” at The Rockwell Dinner Theatre

Supper and Stage make for a delectable evening’s entertainment

Villains Ale House Logo 2DJ nights at Villain’s Ale House

Kick start your weekend with DJ nights every Thursday, Friday and Saturday

PPG - 1Powerpuff Girls Art Factory Exhibition

Sugar, spice and everything alternative

SuidoosterfeesSuidoosterfees in Cape Town

Celebrate Kaapse culture and heritage with a series of colourful concerts, comedy shows and more

The Queen and PeasantThe Queen and Peasant Weekend Meet and Greets

Treat yourself to a tasting of fine wines, beers and spirits this weekend

SA Cheese Festival cheeseSouth African Cheese Festival

If you’re in the mood for Bries and blues then head to this cheesy foodie fest

Battlefield Live SA Laser Tag Children's Events Cape TownKids’ Party Special with Battlefield Live SA Laser Tag

Treat your little one to the ultimate military-style birthday bash and save R500

Wild Fig Outdoor Restaurant Dining The Wild Fig Restaurant’s Alfresco Saturday Lunch

Enjoy long, lazy weekend lunches outdoors at this historic Cape Town eatery

The Wild FigSaturday Live Music at The Wild Fig

Unwind after a stressful week!

Plant Tempting Tuesday 7Live Music Saturdays at Plant

Mix a little music with your healthy meal

Glowing Rooms 3Glowing Rooms SA offers a special opening price!

Pay a special rate for entrance into SA’s first 3D space-themed glow-in-the-dark mini-golf adventure

Scootours FranschhoekJunior Passengers Ride FREE Every Saturday with Scootours® Cape Town

This family-friendly off-road adventure will see you (and the whole clan) freewheeling on a Monster Mountain® Scooter

Knife 7Birthday Party Special at Knife Restaurant

Get a meal on the house when you celebrate your birthday on a Saturday at this Century City smokehouse

Orphanage-cocktail-emporium-bottles#TANZMUSIK DJ Nights at Orphanage Cocktail Emporium

Smooth sounds and even smoother drinks punctuate Saturday nights at this whimsical bar

AfrikaBurn1Afrikaburn Festival

The dusty Karoo desert comes alive to host one of the most radical festivals on the festival lover’s calendar

Galileo Open Air Cinema Cape TownThe Galileo Open Air Cinema in the Cape Winelands and Cape Town Venues

Grab some snacks and get ready to watch your favourite films beneath the stars on the Weekends

Haute Cabriere 3Cellar Master’s Tour at Haute Cabriére Wine Estate

Sniff, swirl and sip every Saturday at this picturesque Franschhoek-based winery

Camissa Eco TourThe Eco-friendly Train Township Tour Saturday Special

Grow more than just your cultural quotient on this interactive excursion to the Langa community

The Grand CafeSunset Affair Parties at Grand Africa Café & Beach

Welcome nightfall in style with seaside cocktails and house music every Saturday during summer

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