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

Police believe one man responsible for spate of Surrey sex assaults

RCMP release sketches of groping suspect Friday afternoon

Surrey council to consider $357-million parks and rec plan, including 29 new parks

The 10-year draft plan includes two new athletic parks, new ‘urban’ parks in Newton, Guildford and Fleetwood Town Centres

North Delta rugby teams take home gold, bronze in Fraser Valley finals

Seaquam boys finished on top of their division, while Burnsview and Seaquam girls battled for third

OUR VIEW: Surrey’s traffic gridlock is madness

Sick of getting stuck in the seemingly never-ending construction on Surrey roads? So are we.

Seaside Surf’s silver highlights recording-breaking week at nationals

South Surrey volleyball club wins eight medals at Volleyball Canada championships in Edmonton

Black Press Media to launch Pipeline Full of Controversy series

Series covers Trans Mountain’s history, science, Indigenous reaction, politics and economics

B.C. RCMP swoop in to save injured eagle

An eagle with a broken wing now in a recovery facility after RCMP rescue near Bella Coola

Bug spray 101: Health Canada wants you to stay bite free

Health Canada is reminding Canadians to use bug spray and other insect repellents safely

Unions reject CP Rail contract offers

Both meeting Friday to determine next steps; 72 hours notice required before strike action.

B.C. jewellers warn public about fake gold scam

‘They are playing on people’s sympathy and their greed’

Former B.C. premier says pot industry about to enter Wild West

Mike Harcourt says Canada is about to enter a new gold rush with many dreaming of striking it rich

Hunt continues for two suspects in Ontario restaurant explosion

The explosion left 15 people injured, but all victims have now been released from hospital

UPDATE: RCMP on scene to remove homeless housing protesters

Residents blocking the installation of modular housing in Maple Ridge

Toronto Raptors star to hold basketball camp in B.C.

DeMar DeRozan is hosting a four-day camp for players aged 6-16 at the University of Victoria

Most Read