With the Miss World Canada pageant only a week away, a local contestant is balancing both preparation and a charity dinner.
Ziyah Karmali, Miss Edmonton, is hosting a banquet tonight at Haweli Restaurant on 10220 – 103 St. to support the Variety Children’s Charity.
The charity helps young children with disabilities learn and participate in community activities.
Karmali said helping others is important to her, but children are especially close to her heart.
“I’m a teacher by day, so I really believe that education for all children is important,” Karmali said.
Some local figures are expected to come out and support the dinner, including Mayor Stephen Mandel, former Oiler Georges Laraque and Eskimos past-and-present Shannon Garret, J.R. LaRose and Patrick Kabongo.
But how does Karmali organize a major fundraiser, teach and prepare for the biggest pageant in Canada?
“All-nighters,” she said, laughing. “But really I try to organize myself. I teach during the day, so I wake up early to start my day and continue after work. It’s very stressful but I hope it will pay off in the end.”
The Miss World Canada pageant takes place May 3-7 in Vancouver. If Karmali wins the title, she will represent Canada at the Miss World 2010 pageant in Vietnam this fall.