A SPIRITED student is taking part in the first ever virtual Miss England semi-finals, determined to change the stereotype of ‘beauty pageants’ and help good causes.
Emily Rowlands, 17, hopes to win a place in the grand finals of the competition and use her platform to help charities and make a difference in the community.
Emily, from Frolesworth near Lutterworth, won her place in the semi-finals by finishing runner-up in Miss Leicestershire 2020, having raised £220 for a homelessness charity through a pick and mix sale at her college and a collection of essential items around her village.
The A-level student said: “It was extremely rewarding – and, as this was the first ever pageant I’d entered, I was extremely surprised when I got a place in the semis.”
In preparing for the semi finals, she has been using her time in lockdown to raise money for charities that are dear to her – including the Miss England contest’s chosen charity Beauty With a Purpose, which protects the health, education and well-being of disadvantaged children worldwide, and We Do Ethical, an environmental charity which helps the conversation of the planet.
She said: “Fundraising for charity is something I’m extremely passionate about. Beauty With a Purpose is extremely important to me as I am a Young Leader for the Girlguiding Organisation and I love to be able to volunteer to ensure young girls receive the skills and confidence they need for when they grow up, and have a positive role model to look up to.
“I am a passionate feminist and am using my platform during the Miss England contest to do as much as I can, even if it has to take place online, to try and get the message across that ‘beauty pageants’ have changed so much throughout the decades.
“It is so much more than just looks! The girls do the most incredible charity work and are incredible role models to many. Being one of the youngest semi-finalists, I am determined to show no matter your age, if you put your mind to something, anything is possible.”
Visit https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/EmilyRowlands5 to take part in Emily’s raffle and raise money for her charities.
The semi-finals will be streamed live online on Friday July 31. Visit www.missengland.info for more information.