She is a finalist for Miss Teen World South Africa Finalist 2022 and Miss Teen International South Africa Finalist 2022 and she is all about promoting self-worth among her peers
Keleabetswe ‘Ziny’ Dingoko, 18 believes she can use this opportunity to promote self-worth, and positive mental health among the youth.
She started modelling professionally at two years old and got into beauty pageants at 4 years old. She loves being able to use her voice in promoting positivity and motivating young people.
Her friends and family know her to be highly motivated. Daily she deals with issues affecting young people and by entering both contests, she can reach more young people. Motivated by her to be anything she aspires to be and that her dreams are valid, Keleabetswe wants to use her own experience to help others.
She entered Miss Teen World South Africa Finalist 2022 and Miss Teen International South Africa Finalist 2022 after seeing them pop up on her social media.
At first, she ignored it and took it as a sign when her aunts who had been visiting suggested she try her hand at entering.
“I knew it was meant to be. It’s almost like the universe was motivating me to share my story,” Ziny says.
When she made it as a finalist, she started to think long and hard about the kind of message she would like to share with her peers.
“Young people are facing many challenges and I wanted to share and teach people based on my first-hand experience,” Keleabetswe says.
In the past, she had dealt with her own challenges of worthlessness.
“It took me time to learn that I often undermine myself and my capabilities. I would often live in doubt about whether I am good enough. I would try hard to fit in and in the end, I would self-distrust,” Keleabetswe says.
“I have dealt with issues of mental health. But it started with me identifying the issues and using my faith to guide me. This took me my early teen years to realise and work on my self-worth and self-love and I am now at a place where I am confident and self-esteem.”
Keleabetswe has been a pillar of strength to many of her peers and friends who have dealt with depression, low self-esteem, divorcing parents, and issues related to adolescence and wants to do the same for other young people across the world.
“I wanted to encourage and spread the message that you are worth more. Many young people struggle with depression and anxiety and the aim is to spread a message of love and acceptance.”
In her spare time, Keleabetswe enjoys reading books by her favourite authors Maya Angelou and Jennifer Houston. She believes exercise, enjoying time with family and friends, watching Netflix, and being in the outdoors can stimulate one’s creativity and give them a fresh perspective on life.
She loves to sing and has entered musical competitions.
Keleabetswe would like to increase her involvement with young people in community building projects and bridge the gap between the youth and adults. She wants to encourage young girls to love themselves and for young boys to express themselves more and break the stigmas of ‘men don’t cry.’
To Vote for Keleabetswe, SMS WSAP KELEABETSWE to 47439. SMSs cost R3.00. Free SMSs do not apply.