Belgian Homeless Women Clean Up Reasonably Well in Controversial Pageant

October 13, 2009

A beauty pageant for homeless women in Belgium has given hope to local homeless woman but has also ruffled the feathers of feminists.

The last thing usually on the minds of the 10 contestants in the Miss Homeless beauty contest is their personal appearance, deportment, and style. Yet for one day, 10 of Belgium’s homeless women were made to feel like princesses as they vied for the title of Miss Homeless 2009. Contestants had to participate in five categories, including a talk where judges assessed their "will to get themselves out of a difficult situation."

The organizer of the event, Aline Duportail, told the Austrian Times that the event “was about the contestants' inner strength and determination to get themselves out of their old life and on a new path.” She hoped the event would raise the self-confidence and self-esteem of the participants. Activist Jacqueline Aubenas disagrees, saying, "I am outraged. These girls turned into puppets parodying their own life. Absolutely pathetic."

The organizers crowned 58-year-old Therese Van Belle the winner. She is set to move into her new apartment shortly. Sadly, the nine other women had to head back to the streets.

What do you think? Was the pageant pathetic?

Source: The Sun