The Mrs. Universe South Africa & Africa pageant is on, and one of the contestants is from Middelburg. The official Mrs. Universe South Africa & Africa pageant is open to married and divorced women, between 25 & 50 years old. Having been a victim of domestic violence herself, this incredible woman is now leading by example in the fight against the abuse of women and children. “I’m Xolile Cele, a teacher at Tshwenyane Secondary School. As a teacher, I like to empower the youth to take their position in the working environment, regardless of their background and situation. Raising awareness on domestic violence is very important, since the majority of learners are facing it at home. I’m working closely with The Victim Support Centre in Middelburg. The centre is currently in the renovation process,” said Xolile. “I entered Mrs. Universe South Africa because it’s a proper platform, not only to raise awareness, but also to inspire women of all ages. Its been my long time goal to assist disadvantaged communities and empower them. Also to encourage women to be financially independent, empowered and lead in entrepreneurship. Women have been long deprived of taking a lead in society, and have been the victims of domestic abuse,” added Xolile. Her passion for helping people has also been handed down to her learners. “I’m in my 40s and setting an example that other women, can also make a difference in the community. It has been my wish to win beauty pageants since childhood and to see myself abroad, representing my rainbow nation, South Africa. My greatest wish is to see my former, and current learners, reaching greater heights in life. I’ve assisted a number of learners into pageants. I currently have 3 learners in Middelburg who are finalists in Miss Teenager Teen, 1 finalist in Supranational and 1 in Mr. Mpumalanga.” she concluded.