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Filipino teen queen tells girls: Don’t be a copycat



A Filipino beauty queen based in Canada has encouraged teenaged girls to stop copying other people, and find their own style.

This was the advice of Clarisse Joy Bucao Fernando, 17, who won as Miss Teenager Asia 2018 in Mexico recently. She came to Manila to do charity work for the less fortunate.

Clarisse Joy Bucao Fernando

Clarisse Joy Bucao Fernando

“If you join beauty pageants, the way you present yourself is what matters on stage. It’s all about your brain and how beautiful you show yourself. You are unique and you don’t need to be someone else,” said Fernando, during an exclusive interview at the National Development Park Committee in Manila. She was accompanied by her parents Raul and Normita Fernando of Guagua, Pampanga.

Fernando is a grade 11 student, but was accelerated to grade 12 for academic excellence at the Notre Dame High School in Toronto.

She believes that one of the major issues among teens which needs to be addressed is self-confidence.

“Teens should have self-confidence. In social media these days, girls tend to compare themselves to models, supermodels or to people who are not realistic,” Fernando said.

She added: “I believe that girls should be unique and have self-beauty. They don’t need to compare themselves to other girls because its about how you show yourselves to others.”

Fernando’s visit was made possible by Edgar Fajardo Sulit, founder and president of International Professional Entertainment Network I-PEN); National Director for Turismo Filipina Canada Jam Rodriguez, IPEN CEO; and Project Director for I-PEN Philippines Rexner Rubio.

Before she left for Canada over the weekend, Fernando sponsored a breakfast feeding program at the Rizal Park day-care center in Manila.

“I hope that through this small feeding program, I can make a small difference in people’s lives. I hope to do more charity works in the future,” she said.

Fernando recalled that one of her early fund-raising events was for cancer victims. “I did a fund-raising in Canada for cancer patients and I raised over US$300 for that.”

When not busy, Fernando said that she trains in broadcasting for a radio station in Canada.

In college, Fernando said she hopes to take up a business course. But she is bent on taking her pageant journey to the next level.

“I hope to join the Mutya ng Pilipinas beauty contest.  And then I also want to try Bb. Pilipinas,” she said. Fernando added that she has been watching beauty pageants like the Miss Universe contest when she was younger and has been amazed at the beauty queens.

Asked about her inspiration in pageants, Fernando: “I love Pia Wurtzbach. It’s been so long since the Philippines won Miss Universe and I really appreciate her confidence on stage. She’s so smart.” (Robert R. Requintina)



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