An Ireland based Zimbabwean model, Blessing Mutamba, recently won the Miss Ireland international pageant in that country.
She won in two categories – best in the interview category, and most photogenic – before being crowned queen. Blessing Mutamba said pageants boosted her confidence and expanded her charity.
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‘It was rewarding to just be given a chance and at the end of the day it’s a competition where people are there to win, so I was really proud of all the hard work I had put into it. I think pageants are evolving now, especially when you compare them to what they used to be.
They’re now more about empowering women, giving them a voice and a platform, rather than just walking around in a pretty dress. I have learnt a lot of different things about teamwork, humility, staying humble but more importantly feeling comfortable in myself.
For me, pageants are a celebration of being true to yourself, not being a mould of what [others] want or expect you to be.’
Mutamba comes from Mutare but grew up in Ireland. She went to Southampton Solent University where she got a first class honours degree in Creative Enterprise before completing her Masters degree at Falmouth University. The 23-year-old Zimbabwean is involved in charity work having set up a charitable organization called Giving Through Labels.