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Beauty contest for disabled rural women a hit

LIMPOPO – As results of a huge number of participants and attendance drawn by a beauty contest staged to empower and uplift rural women living with various disabilities, the organisers have promised to make the contest an annual event.

The contest, which took place in Thohoyandou recently, received a huge crowd as it was first of its kind in Vhembe. More than 12 women living with various disabilities, including paraplegics in wheelchairs, participated in the contest.

“More still needs to be done to inspire and empower our disabled people – not only women. We cannot ignore the fact that most disabled people who come from deep rural communities have limited opportunities to make something out of themselves. We need to create opportunities for these people in order to empower them to be successful,” said Uafhindula Lalamani of Unique Me, a non-profit organisation aimed at uplifting people with physical challenges.


He said that they decided to make the contest an annual event after realising that more still needs to be done to empower disabled women to be independent and pursue their chosen careers.

“This was just the beginning, but we are saying to people out there ‘Let’s lend a helping hand to develop and empower disabled people as they did not choose to be disabled’,” he said.

This month, Unique Me is set to host an event which will be known as ME DAY where people living with different disabilities will be given an opportunity to showcase their talents through singing, dancing and reciting poems.

An edited version of this story was published by IOL

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