Letterkenny University Hospital staff are cheering on their friend and colleague as she competes in the Miss/Mrs Africa UK competition.
Dineo Moiloa-Murphy, a native of South Africa, is taking to the stage in Manchester this Saturday in the hope of being crowned queen of the major pageant.
Ballgowns and tiaras are a far cry from Dineo’s everyday workwear as a Specialist Emergency Physician at Letterkenny ED. She has a large team of supporters at the hospital who are calling on all Donegal people to vote for her in the People’s Choice category here: https://africaukpageants.co.uk/poll/mrs-miss-africa-finalist-2023/
“Dineo is an inspiration. She is as much a Donegal woman as she is South African. She has made her home here while being very active in the African community,” said Dr Ashraf Gadir, a consultant in the ED.
“She is always on the go, helping anyone who comes to her. She has a way with people that is very appealing, from the worried older patient and the young and hip. She is a great advocate for people’s rights and minorities and she’s not shy about it.”
Miss/Mrs Africa UK is about much more than beauty. It’s a platform for women to celebrate their heritage, support charities, gain confidence and be a role model to others.
Dr Moiloa-Murphy is already proud of how far she has come since being named a finalist. This summer, she has pushed herself out of her comfort zone to educate people about African women’s achievements, represent the African community at events and to promote Mary’s Meals Ireland in her community.
The pageant journey saw Dineo raising over €1,900 for Mary’s Meals through the 240km Walk to Knock challenge in August. She has also been engaging with migrant communities new to Ireland and making friends for life through her fellow pageant finalists.
She said: “Looking back on all that I have done this year, I am so grateful to meet so many people in the community. I am so glad that I met the Mary’s Meals Donegal volunteers. The charity work brought me closer to what they do and I am energised to continue with them and their projects into next year.
“It’s been a humbling journey. There is only one Miss/Mrs Africa chosen in the end, but we are all winners.
“I am 44, I am a doctor, a mother and a wife. I hope that I can be a role model for young black kids. We want to show that we shine and celebrate the beauty of Africa and what it really means.”
Dineo, while immensely proud of her background, is putting down roots in Donegal. She recently bought a house in Stranorlar and last week celebrated a huge housewarming with her family who have travelled for the pageant.
To Dineo, being African means never forgetting where you come from.
“It’s something you discover more when you are away from home,” she said. “You find it is more important to embrace your culture. By becoming your true authentic self you find happiness and peace and you find like-minded people. That is what Africa is about. We embrace our spirit and being able to find that away from home is so beautiful.”
The Miss/Mrs Africa UK grand finale will feature 13 women from the UK and Ireland celebrating their talents, strength and empowerment of young women.
Awards are also being handed out for Miss Charity and People’s Choice. Every vote counts, and it only takes two clicks to vote for Dineo Moiloa-Murphy here: https://africaukpageants.co.uk/poll/mrs-miss-africa-finalist-2023/