UMZUMBE Municipality held its Miss High School competition last Saturday at Mehlomnyama Community Hall, where pupils from Mthwalume High, Zibonele High, Buhlebethu High, Sbongimfundo High, Mabiya High, Luthuli High, KwaFica High and Malusi High participated. Organiser, Sthembile Nxumalo of Yonwaba Nathi said this was the first beauty pageant to be held in the area. “The Miss High School competition was born because of the enthusiasm and demand of the young people we serve. It is a community initiative led by young women, targeting young women who live in rural areas, the targets of sugar daddies, also known as ‘blessers’,” said Nxumalo. The event aims to empower, uplift, inform, and offer platforms where pupils can have discussions, find solutions to the social ills and the struggles they face at home, at school and in society. Nxumalo said the pageant prioritises academic excellence and brings back the excitement of being young and in school with the aim of minimising the school drop-out rate and decreasing teenage pregnancy in school. Nothando Madiya from Mtwalume High was crowned queen, first princess was Sisanda Khoza also from Mtwalume High and second princess was Wendy Shusha from Luthuli High. The princesses walked away with school goodie hampers from Waltons, LoveLife and the queen walked away with a Samsung Tablet worth R7 000. After the crowning the top 10 will participate in the district Queen of High Schools on 27 August competing with schools from Hibiscus Coast, Ezinqoleni and Umuziwabantu municipalities. They will also attend a three-day leadership and team-building camp in the Drakensberg and participate in the Young Women Seminar and other youth development programmes.