Catwalk finalist's quest to spread message

It's not about winning a shiny crown or parading down a catwalk for pageant finalist, Yolandi Franken.

The Carlingford resident is on a mission to promote early diagnosis and screening of cancers through the Mrs Australia Quest — a pageant which raises awareness and funds for ovarian cancer.

Mrs Franken knows what it's like when a regular check-up at the doctor becomes life-changing — her own cervical cancer diagnosis has made sure of that. Now, she is urging people to listen to their bodies and to have any concerns checked out.

"I want people to become aware of the signs and symptoms," the 32-year-old said.

"I want them to know when something doesn't feel right to go to the doctor to get checked out."

Mrs Franken will compete against 10 pageant entrants at the national finals in the Hunter Valley on Saturday, April 12.

The actor, producer and model will be judged on her health and fitness, swimwear and a Q&A.

She said she was nervous about the upcoming competition, but wasn't worried about winning.

"If I win, I have a vehicle on a bigger scale to promote early detection," Mrs Franken said.

"Even if I don't win, I will continue to raise awareness because it's a cause that is close to my heart."

Mrs Franken has raised more than $2500 for the pageant's charities through various fund-raising events including a breakfast, a dinner and she has made a video which promotes early detection of cancers.

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