At the beginning of August, I was asked to be a part of the Go Girl Academy. The Go Girl Academy is a series of workshops for young girls to make new friends, gain confidence and to grow as young women. My first session with the academy saw me speaking to a group of young girls about my journey so far, not only as Miss Wales, but as… Well, Emma! I told them how insecure I was at school, how I was always last in sports and how far I’ve come from that unsure young girl of 12 years ago. It was touching to see how intently these girls listened to what I had to say, and how many of them could relate to my past. The girls were so sweet, and I really enjoyed myself. After the day was done, I was tagged in a picture of a wall full of post-it notes. Upon closer inspection, I realised that it was written by the girls, expressing what they enjoyed most about the day. 80% of the notes mentioned having met ‘Miss Wales’ and I was truly touched. In all honesty, I got a little emotional. To see that you’ve made an impact on a group like that reminds you of why you wanted to be Miss Wales in the first place. The Miss World organisation stands for two things, charity and the empowerment of women. It is wonderful to know that I am getting that message out to girls all over Wales through my work.
At the end of August, I was asked to present at the Modelling Network fashion show, in aid of two Welsh victims of the Tunisian beach attack. The night was a huge success, featuring boutiques and fashion brands from all over the UK. The event raised £1,115. The Modelling Network catwalk wasn’t the only one in my life that week however. One of the perks of my job is reporting from London Fashion Week, and this season was no exception. I love the hustle and bustle of the city, meeting designers and models, and of course, being sat in the ‘frow’ witnessing fashion history being made. I featured a ‘vlog’ on my ‘Miss World Wales’ Facebook while I was there so if you missed it, head on over to my page!
When September 1st dawned, I realised how excitingly close Miss World had now become. It was time to film my Miss World Introduction video. With the help of Richard Collins and everyone at Tinopolis Llanelli, we filmed and edited the entire thing in 1 day! We filmed the two minute introduction in the Prynhawn Da studio, and it was one of the most nerve wracking things I have done! Being in front of the camera comes natural to me these days, but addressing the entire world, as well as the Miss World organisation made this a whole new experience. I was so pleased with the outcome, and couldn’t have done it without the talented people I have the pleasure of working with. You can see it soon on the Miss World website
On September 26th, the Miss Wales 2016 finalists, some friends, family and I, held a Wedge Walk on Cardiff Bay to raise money for Beauty with a Purpose. We walked three miles in high heels and managed to raise £1600!
As many of you know, I have used my Miss Wales title to promote confidence and empowerment to women by teaming up with ‘Women’s Aid.’ I am an ambassador for their S.T.A.R. project, and I recently finished my training at the Llanelli office! I was so proud to walk out of there knowing I could start making a real difference. This means that I am now able to visit schools to deliver these prevention courses! The S.T.A.R. Project, (safety, trust and respect) is aimed at, and delivered to, children and young people in order to prevent them from entering abusive relationships, or developing abusive behaviours in the future. I want to be a positive and motivational role model and I plan to continue to work with this charity for as long as I am able.
At the beginning of September, I received an invitation to attend the C Group Royal Marines Awards. The evening truly outlived all expectations. Hearing from these selfless men who gave their lives to not only protect our country, but to help people in need all over the world was so moving. The C Group are working tirelessly to rehabilitate men who have suffered injuries and trauma, to give them new jobs and skills, and to support them in any way that they can. The highlight of the evening was having the chance to meet Julia Morley. I was proud to be present when Julia was given the ‘Individual Achievement’ Award for her countless years as a humanitarian and founder of ‘Beauty With a Purpose’. I was star struck to also meet the reigning Miss World, Rolene Strauss. Not only is she a remarkable young woman but she is so beautiful and sweet. I was quite speechless when she came to chat to me. The night raised more than £90,000 for the C Group, and I am proud to say I was a part of it. I did a very geeky thing before I left – I kept my table place name along with those of Julia Morley and Rolene Strauss! They are now sat proudly in my Miss Wales memory box… You can take the girl out of Wales, but you can’t take Wales out of the girl!
There is so much more happening over the next few weeks in the lead up to Miss World. I leave for China on November 21st, and I plan on holding a farewell fundraiser on November the 7th. Everyone is welcome, and so please check the Miss World Wales Facebook for details! Thanks for reading my blog, have a great day!