Miss BC competition a ‘catalyst’ for confidence, advocacy

Past winner Tara Teng reflects on her accomplishments as this year’s event approaches

More than five years and two children later, Tara Teng still thanks the Miss BC program for instilling in her a lot of the confidence she has now as a mom, blogger and activist.

Teng, originally from Powell River, won Miss BC in 2010.

But she didn’t stop there, winning Miss Canada in 2011 and Miss World Canada in 2012.

Representing Canada among 118 competitors on the international stage, she used her new-found courage to shed light on human trafficking — a cause that’s close to her heart.

“Miss BC gave me the platform to spread awareness on a global scale,” Teng said, “and opened doors to some of the highest offices of influences that might have otherwise been closed to me as a young woman.”

Now a life and style blogger, Teng is the B.C. director for the Joy Smith Foundation and continues to deliver her message in 40,000-seat stadiums and on TEDx stages.

“And it was Miss BC that was a catalyst for all that.”

In addition to her work at the foundation and writing for the “socially conscious woman,” Teng said she is still part of Miss BC, but now behind the scenes.

She runs leadership workshops for the participants and helped create a new Junior Miss BC category.

“We wanted there to be something equally empowering and inspiring for preteen girls,” she said.

“Our workshops include topics on real beauty, self-esteem, public speaking, leadership, as well as issues such as bullying and online safety.”

Since her days on stage, Teng said she’s seen beauty pageants change their approach to what beauty looks like, and believes that Miss BC has led the way.

Some of her fellow competitors have gone on to becoming neurosurgeons, politicians and Olympians.

“These are women with a voice, who champion important causes and who are blazing trails and breaking glass ceilings in their communities, education and their workplaces.”

This year’s Miss BC pageant, of which Black Press is a sponsor, is set for July 1 to 3 in Fort Langley.

You can vote for your Miss Teen BC pick in the People’s Choice Awards. Votes can be casted online, once per hour, until the contest closes on Friday, June 23 at midnight.

Just Posted

Colwood development draws ire of residents

Developer says he’s listened and addressed residents’ concerns

What is it like to be part of the Canadian Armed Forces?

Try military rations, combat gear and simulated shooting range on Saturday

Victoria Police meet Aboriginal activists for afternoon flick

The group gathered as part of ongoing series of events supporting reconciliation efforts

Dance Victoria Nutcracker contest returns to Oak Bay village

Find Mr. Nutcracker and Tommy Tempo now through Nov. 26 for chacne to win ballet tickets

100,000 bulbs shine bright for Lights of Hope

St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver launched its annual campaign to raise funds for equipment, research

West Shore craft fair roundup

Holiday-themed events taking place on the West Shore

Weekend hit list: Things to do in Greater Victoria

FRIDAY Find Mr. Nutcracker and his cousin Tommy Tempo as they visit… Continue reading

Uptown’s Christmas Tree Light Up is Saturday night

Uptown assembling 54-foot-tall tree for fifth annual Light Up

Nasty note on B.C. windshield sparks online outrage

Vernon’s Bailey McDonald is using a painful experience to start conversation about invisible illness

Federal funding to combat guns, gangs and opioid crisis

Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale said illicit drugs are often main cause of guns, gangs violence

Riverview youth mental health centre proceeds

Replacement for Maples Treatment Centre first announced in March

Dead boy’s father posts Facebook response after Appeal Court upholds conviction

David, Collet Stephan were found guilty in their son Ezekiel’s 2012 death from bacterial meningitis

Trudeau mania, Scheer enthusiasm in B.C. this week

Prime minister, Conservative leader drop in on Surrey, White Rock

Most Read