In an interview on Magandang Buhay, Miss Universe Philippines 2020 Rabiya Mateo shared how things weren’t easy for her before she won the crown.
She used to work giving out flyers in malls and being an usherette.
“For example po sa mga brands namimigay po ng mga flyers or minsan po nag u-usher din po ako sa mga events nung college ako di ko po kase yun ikinakahiya. Dun kase ako kumikita ng pera eh na mabibigay ko sa mama ko.”
She also shared how she valued her education.
“So sabi ko nga mag aaral talaga ako ng mabuti kase kahit ibang tao minsan nakikita ko yung mga classmates ko nababayaran nila mga tuition nila pero hindi sila nag aaral ng mabuti.”
She was motivated to do her best seeing how their mom struggled to raise her kids by herself.
“And ako kailangan ko talaga mag doble hirap kase mahirap lang din kame eh and sabi ko kapag ako nakapagtapos hindi na talaga mangungutang si mama sa ibang tao, makakain na talaga kame parati, mapapatira ko na din siya sa bahay na gusto niya. So yung yung naging motivation ko po eh.
“Sabi ko sa iba nga diba kase anak ka ikaw yung responsibilidad ng nanay po sa akin po hinde dahil anak ako responsibilidad ko po ang pamilya ko.”
After winning the title as Miss Universe Philippines, Rabiya was faced with controversy as allegations of cheating surfaced. But despite this, she was backed up by her friends and colleagues who knew her from her pre-pageant days.
Ramon Munez, a Facebook user, shared how the beauty queen really began from the bottom and mentioned the time when she had no money to even pay rent.
“Years ago, she stayed at our boarding house for less than a semester while she was studying at the Iloilo Doctor’s College. She did not have money to pay for rent, through hard work, perseverance, and sheer grit, she graduated cum laude and now, the 2020 Miss Universe Philippines. Congratulations Rabiya Mateo! We’re proud of you!,” Ramon wrote.