Miss Universities setting high standards

HARARE - Miss Universities Zimbabwe, a pageant that was started in 2010 has proved to be a strong force as the organisers continue to churn out well-organised contests.

Miss Universities searches for beauties from local universities.

With the Miss Zimbabwe pageant crippled with financial problems and a lack of proper support from the corporate world, most people had lost hope in beauty pageants.

Farirai Chibage, one of the organisers attributed the pageant’s success to perseverance.

“Getting sponsorship is really difficult to be honest.

“Companies and corporates have lost confidence in the pageants as in the past funds were abused.

“You notice that pageants always have a long list of sponsors because companies are not willing to sponsor a lot of money as they fear it will be abused.

“You will discover that companies with the capacity to sponsor $10 000 end up giving only $500 and donate maybe in kind. This is the challenge that pageants face and to succeed one needs to be resilient and consistently do follow ups,” she said.

Twenty-six-year-old Melisa Shumba from the National University of Science and Technology (Nust) currently holds the Miss Universities Zimbabwe title, having been crowned over the weekend.

The runner ups are first princess; Chengetai Gunguwo (21) from the Midlands State University (MSU) and Montolo Mohale (21) from the University of Zimbabwe (UZ) who was the second princess.

Shumba walked away with a Nissan March, a laptop, a Blackberry phone and other prizes.

Chibage said their success is also due to the standards they set for themselves.

“As an organisation, we know what our values are and the kind of people we want to work with.
 
“I think having a strong set of goals and standards helps, people tend to take you more seriously when you show them what your values are.

“We know what we are looking for and go after that. In these times of companies having little confidence in us, it is the only way to go and I think other organisers should do the same,” she said.

Their theme this year is “Beauty With Brains” and their first public campaign was on abortion and prostitution awareness.

“We did that campaign in Harare and we are hoping to spread it countrywide specifically in universities as we hear most of these cases are coming from there.

“ Melisa is the ambassador and we are yet to plan her calendar but this campaign is surely on the agenda.
“Another campaign we are looking at is on cancer awareness. We noticed that it is a disease affecting more people than they realise.

“This is part of our queen’s job,” she said.


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