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Miss Independence Kgatleng: A pageant like no other

Publishing Date : 20 May, 2019

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In an era where the significance of beauty pageants is diminishing, owing to shambolic organisers, unfulfilled promises and other negatives — Miss Independence Kgatleng is proving otherwise.

A fortnight ago, Miss Independence Kgatleng was awarded the best organisation in youth development at the annual Botswana Youth Awards. The founder of the pageant, Lebopo Bulayani is adamant that that the recognition was due. The pageant is in its fifth year now, and they have consistently followed their strong programme.  “It was about time we get it," she told WeekendLife, “"This award means a lot to us as we do a lot of work not only for the youth but we also give back to the community."

Bulayani said the pageant is not all about pretty faces but empowering the youth through life skills  training and mainstream of culture through boot camps which  are held a month before the event. The pageant runs an annual boot camp which is supported by the Ministry of Youth Empowerment Sports and Culture Development where different speakers from different organisations as well as beneficiaries of the government funds are invited to come and inspire the youth about ways of bettering their lives, taking advantage of government policies.

 Bulayani said the pageant wants participants in their programme to be determined to change their lives and be able to create jobs, and avoid always complaining.  “After the motivation session, we have traditional food challenge where the finalists prepare different cultural plates and judged on preparation, presentation and taste by a community elder,” Bulayani said.

“In continuation of cultural activities very early in the morning the ladies leave for the cattle post to milk cattle and goats and also judged on it. In the past 3 years this camp has been held at Ledingwana in Malotwane village but this year it will be held at the hills of Music in Rasesa.” Apart from other duties it is mandatory for the queen to mentor students about excellence, violence, teenage pregnancy and alcohol and drug abuse which are the social ills on the rise in Kgatleng region.

The organisation is on the verge of refurbishing a house for one underprivileged family in Rasesa who have been identified and given a go ahead by the award chief, councillor and the social work department. This year's event will be held on the 28th September at Ntefo Conference Centre in Mochudi and sponsored by Clicks organisation, Ntefo Conference Centre, African Grill House, Sinois, Mosha wellness spa amongst other companies.



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