Miss Deaf South Africa 2015 finalist Janie Erasmus has brought home the international crown of the Miss Deaf World 2016 at a ceremony held in Prague, Czech Republic.
In an event held on Saturday night, Janie Erasmus from South Africa was crowned Miss Deaf World 2016 while French Kevin Petit became Mister Deaf World 2016 in the 16th beauty contest final.
Managing Director of Miss Deaf World in South Africa, Leviena Smit said: “Congratulations to our beautiful Miss Deaf World 2016 – Janie Erasmus. Breathtaking crowning moment… super proud! xx”
Second and third place went to Senegal and Canada respectively.
Janie took to social media to thank her fans some hours before the ceremony.
“To all my Rainbow-supporters in South Africa and new international friends – thank you for your support, kind words and messages of encouragement for my participation in the Miss Deaf World Pageant tonight.”
Her message was accompanied by a video of herself that was to be broadcast at the ceremony.
Janie’s Facebook page indicates she usually works in administration at Spar.
The Miss and Mister Deaf World beauty contest is an annually held ceremony which aims at giving the hearing impaired young people a sense of belonging.
This year’s contest attracted 75 deaf contestants from different countries around the world.
The contestants who were assessed by an international jury first appeared in folk costumes of their indigenous countries.
This was followed by another part of the event where women mostly danced while the men performed in sport outfits.
The usual show off in swimwear and evening gowns and suits was also part of the competition.
President of the competition Josef Uhlir spoke on the challenges they faced with regards to training choreography with the contestants. The fact that they have impaired hearing makes it hard to dance to the rhythm of the music.
Miss Deaf World competition was premiered in Mallorca.