Recently I discovered there is a Miss Africa Perth competition and South Africa is being represented in the competition! This week I’ve had a chat with the lovely Charlen Boboko who is representing SA in the competition which will be decided on 27 May at the Astor Theatre (you can get tickets to the event online here).
Charlen moved to Perth when she was 14 to live with her mother. In 2012 she finished her school education and also became a mother to a baby girl. She took some time out of studying but has not let motherhood stop her continuing her education – she is currently studying biomedical science at Murdoch University while balancing motherhood and family life. She calls herself an introvert and loves losing herself in a good book. Her passion lies in issues that affect the communities where she has lived. She says “I would love to dedicate my life to helping young mothers and their children overcome adversity”.
Where in SA are you from?
I’m from Alabama, a small township in the North West Province.
How long have you been in Australia?
I arrived in Perth in late 2008. This year will mark my ninth year as a Perth local.
How did you get involved in Miss Africa Perth?
I had been contemplating whether or not to audition for a few years, and one day I just decided to go for it! I feel that it was probably one of the best decisions I’ve made this year, and being given a chance to step out of my comfort zone and experience something new while pursuing my passion is the best part of the deal.
How were you chosen to represent SA at Miss Africa Perth?
After registering my interests as a possible Miss Africa Perth contestant I was invited to audition, and a few days later I received a ‘welcome’ email from the Director. I’m humbled to be representing the beautifully diverse South Africa and hope to instill a sense of pride in all of those who may be following my journey.
What sets you apart from the other contestants?
I believe that my experience as a young mother has awarded me with the knowledge to overcome adversity and has also strengthened my resilience. The beautiful thing about the Miss Africa Perth pageant is that each contestant brings with them their personal qualities that set them apart from the rest of the group and being able to see it all come to life makes for an extra special experience.
What are the responsibilities of Miss Africa Perth?
As the titleholder, Miss Africa Perth will act as a youth ambassador for the African community in Perth; promote a positive image of Africa, organise fundraising events and support projects for the benefit of the community, and promote social, economic and cultural activities for the advancement of Africans in Australia and the Diaspora.
What are your plans after the competition?
After Miss Africa Perth I plan on working towards actualising my goals and gaining experience in working with organisations and charities, particularly Global Empowers, a social enterprise with a mission to be single-minded and passionately driven to create and implement revolutionary innovations delivering affordable life essentials.
I would, however, in coming years, be happy to represent South Africa at a national or international level is the opportunity ever presented itself.