A born and bred Free State beauty pageant contestant, Christina Nyaile-Maloka (33), is one of the 12 finalists in the 2018 Mrs Africa Continental pageant. She is a finalist vying for the title for the married women category (25 to 40 years).Announced as a finalist in September, Nyaile-Maloka will be carrying hopes of the Free State and South Africa at the final round of the pageant that has five categories. She is the only finalist from the Free State to take part. Nyaile-Maloka has her roots in Naledi Village in Qwaqwa. She is not a novice in beauty pageants as she participated in a few contests in Qwaqwa while she was still a learner. Her journey in beauty pageants started at the age of nine. However, she still has to win her maiden crown. Nyaile-Maloka hopes to do well in this continental beauty pageant and possibly win her first-ever crown. “I did not expect to be a finalist at all, it came as a surprise. When I researched what the Mrs Africa Continental pageant does and stands for, I was really inspired to enter. “Like other finalists, I have a story to share. I also love to empower women. I believe that my story will encourage and build someone, especially when they see themselves alone,” said Nyaile-Maloka. To intensify her chances of winning, she urged the public to vote for her. While prizes on the line are one of the motivations, Nyaile-Maloka believes the main reward is the opportunity to be a ambassador who will represent South Africa and Africa internationally.Nyaile-Maloka is a proud mother of two sons and a guardian to her sister’s son – in whom she strives to instil moral values she inherited from her parents.