Model Valerie Gugulethu Chingonzo who in May this year clinched the Miss Teen Personality Zimbabwe title and hails from Bulawayo, said she has a passion for modelling.
The 20-year-old Chingonzo said she would like to continue showcasing her catwalk skills on the ramp in the near future.
She said in December, she would take part in the Miss Bulawayo beauty pageant.
“I am working towards getting involved in the pageant at the moment,” she said.
At the Miss Teen Zimbabwe pageant, she scooped two titles; Miss Best Dressed and second princess in Miss Teen Bulawayo. She was made Bulawayo Ambassador for Cool Lifestyle by a local publication.
She has also featured in other modelling competitions such as Face of AM, Miss Professional, Miss Zimbabwe Southern Africa and Miss Bulawayo Tourism.
Chingonzo said she has dedicated most of her time at the moment towards charity work.
“I have been involved in sourcing food stuffs from companies and individuals which I then donate to children’s homes,” said the model studying journalism.
She said she would be visiting TG Day Care Centre in Nkulumane suburb this Sunday where she hopes to get involved in decorating the institution.
“I will create some charts for the children which would be put up on the walls.”
Together with former Miss Zimbabwe, Samantha Tshuma they would also visit Chipangali Wild Life Orphanage, she said.
“We want to promote domestic tourism,” she said, adding Tshuma was her “mentor”.
Chingonzo said she would embark on a “going green campaign” before the end of the year.
Although modelling is full of glamour, there are challenges that models face as well, she said.
“We face emotional challenges in that even though one would have spent a lot of time preparing for a show and is confident that she would clinch the title, it happens that she does not make it and that can be emotionally devastating,” she said.
Another challenge is the negative perception associating with women involved in the industry, she said.
“People tend to think that models sleep around with older men and that is not true. Although there can be a few who would do such things, not all of us are like that,” she said.
As part of her future plans, she would like to venture into business.
“I would like to set up a boutique that would take care of women’s beauty needs from head to toe. It will be called Val’beaut,” she said with a chuckle adding that she would like to get involved in as many ventures as possible including acting and being a television anchor.