Miss Philippines Rabiya Mateo is a step closer to win the crown as she entered the Top 21 of the 69th Miss Universe Competition on Monday (Manila time).
Also in the Top 21 are candidates from: Colombia, Peru, Australia, France, Myanmar, Jamaica, Mexico, Dominican Republic, USA, Indonesia, Argentina, India, Curaçao, Puerto Rico, Brazil, Great Britain, Nicaragua, Thailand, Costa Rica and Vietnam (fan votes).
The 69th Miss Universe Competition is still ongoing in Hollywood, Florida.
Rabiya is a Cum Laude graduate of physical therapy and began teaching at the age of 21. She is the current ambassador for education of the Philippines and works with the Department of Education on projects like National Reading Month and AHA Learning Center.
Because of her passion for education, she started her own project called ‘Feed Me and I Read You,’ a program that helps underprivileged children living near the dumpsite of Iloilo city by conducting feeding programs and reading sessions.
These students are suffering from severe malnutrition that affects their learning capabilities and Rabiya works to improve their lives with the potential of a brighter future.
She is also the youngest and only woman in the ethical committee of her country working on protocols to provide the nutritional needs of Filipino children and advocates for breastfeeding. Additionally, she works as a volunteer to the Philippine Red Cross and travels to areas affected by calamities, such as typhoons and earthquakes to provide relief.