Miss Universe Vietnam 2018 Hhen Nie is currently in the Philippines, which is home to Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray. While in the country, the Vietnamese beauty queen tried the Filipino dried salted fish called tuyo.
The Filipino dried salted fish is not new to New as it is also her hometown food called cá khô. On February 1, 2019, she took to Instagram to share a photo of herself trying some Filipino dish in a hotel.
On February 2, 2019, Nie will be an inspirational speaker at the 22nd Regional Youth Congress at the Jessie M. Robredo Coliseum in Naga City, Camarines Sur, Philippines. She was invited by Filipino-American lawyer and philanthropist Francis Padua Papica, who was originally from Bicol, Philippines.
Both with a Cum Laude distinction, Papica earned her undergraduate degree from the University of California, Los Angeles in Los Angeles, California, United States and his law degree from Syracuse Law School in New York, USA. He has a foundation called the Francis Padua Papica Foundation, Inc.
One of the scholars of the FPPFI was 2010 Miss Universe fourth runner-up Venus Raj, who hails from Bicol. The foundation sponsored the 22nd Regional Youth Congress with the Rotary Club of Naga in partnership with the Avenue Plaza Hotel.
Papica told Philippine Star it was Nie’s story that captivated him more than “her obvious beauty.” Along with Filipino pageant coach Anjo Santos, Vietnam-based Filipino workers Gerard Ruivivar and Kim Rocafor helped prepare Nie for Miss Universe 2018, where she finished in the Top 5.
“I sought her as a speaker because she’s a role model for the youth,” Papica said of Nie. “I contacted Miss Universe Organization Vietnam and it responded positively with the help of Ms. Hen’s local trainer, Anjo Santos, and my manager, Leanne Zuñiga Montemayor, helping me follow up.”
When Nie arrived at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Pasay City, Metro Manila, Philippines, she was welcomed by Santos along with several Filipino pageant fans. Here is a clip shared by Miss Universe Vietnam 2018: