A young Letterkenny woman is using her new title as Miss Donegal to raise funds for Pieta.
Ciara Duffy, a personal trainer, was selected to represent her county in the Miss Ireland pageant final this November.
Before she takes to the stage, Ciara has set out to raise funds and awareness for a charity close to her heart.
Ciara has received counselling from Pieta following the death of a family member by suicide a number of years ago.
“Your mental health is so important, just as much as your physical health,” Ciara said.
The 24-year-old is a self-employed PT based at Uforea Fitness Letterkenny.
In the gym environment, she promotes the benefits of fitness and good mental health to her clients
“Some people hate coming into a gym,” Ciara said. “They are self conscious or overthinking, but in a few weeks they don’t care, it’s great to see how they can change their perspective so much.”
Ciara’s entry to Miss Donegal was a big step out of her own comfort zone, she said, but she had a point to prove.
“You never hear of competitions like these in the sporting industry. You are either into sports or into dresses and I want to show that you can do both,” she said.
“I signed up thinking that even if I don’t get through, it’s something I could push other girls to do and set a goal for.”
Ciara’s acceptance as Miss Donegal was a whirlwind experience, she said, but now that she has the crown, she wants to use it for good.
On Monday 30th October, Ciara will host a children’s Halloween Party at Letterkenny Community Centre, from 1pm-3pm. There will be games, sweets, cakes and prizes for the best dressed. Partygoers can also look forward to a raffle. Entry for children is €3 and adult admission is €6pp. All funds raised will be donated to Pieta.
Ciara is also busy preparing to fly the flag for Donegal at the national final in Dublin on November 4th.
Established in 1947, Miss Ireland has been the launch pad for many eminent and inspiring women in Ireland such as Rosanna Davison.
The winner of Miss Ireland 2023 will receive a modelling contract and a host of prizes and will represent Ireland at Miss World in 2024.
Castlefinn student Hannah Mulcahy held the title of Miss Donegal 2022.