After overcoming her own battle with low self-esteem, Miss BC contestant Natasha Chadney wants to help other girls improve their confidence.
The 18-year-old, who graduates from Langley Fundamental Middle School next week, is one of 45 contestants in the 2018 Miss BC pageant, and is choosing to use the platform to promote a message of kindness.
“I have a sister, and a mom and friends who struggle with being confident, and that’s why I want to be an advocate for bringing other people up, because it hurts so much to feel like you’re not good enough,” Chadney said.
“Being in high school can be really tough because you just want to feel accepted, and I didn’t feel like that in my younger grades. People made me feel so low because I would be compared to others, or I started comparing myself to other people.
“From feeling like that — I am slowly getting over it, although it is a process — I don’t want anyone else to feel like that. I want to make sure that I am building other people up, and that people aren’t bringing other people down.”
The 16th annual pageant returns to Fort Langley June 30 to July 2 and features three categories — Mrs BC (open to married women), Miss BC and Miss Teen BC. The pageant final is set for Monday, July 2 at 6:30 p.m. at the Chief Sepass Theatre. Black Press is media sponsor.
Unlike traditional pageants, Miss BC does not focus on physical beauty. There are no age, weight or height restrictions, and contestants receive professional training to enhance their self esteem and leadership skills.
Chadney participated in a similar pageant when she was 16 years old and says she “absolutely loved” the experience.
“It was so incredible building the relationships with all of the girls you were competing against. It didn’t feel like a competition, it was more of a self development program where you worked with your peers to figure out what you liked about yourself and how you could improve,” she said.
“I learned so much about myself, and I felt way more confident stepping out of that pageant, and that’s why I’m so excited to compete for the Miss BC pageant this year.”
Outside of school, Chadney works two jobs and enjoys hot yoga and volleyball. In the fall, she will be attending John Casablancas Institute’s body spa and aesthetics program, and has aspirations to one day open her own medical spa.
The public is invited to vote for their favourite Miss BC contestants in the People’s Choice Awards online at langleytimes.com/contests. The contest ends June 21 at 11:59 p.m.