Singer/Actor, 22-year-old Rikkiya Brathwaite is hoping to put on one of her biggest performances to date and conquer the coveted Miss World Crown.
She will join roughly 130 beauties from around the globe to participate in a three-week-long event which will culminate with the crowning of the new Miss World on December 14 at ExCeL London.
“I feel honoured. I am very happy that the Miss BVI World Committee trusts me and see potential and have faith in me,” Brathwaite told BVI News following her coronation ceremony which was held at Scrub Island Resort on Saturday night.
The Tortola resident said she is hoping to help build the social economy in the BVI through the performing arts by providing sponsorships for budding artists to attend college or art camps abroad.
“I went to several art camps when I was younger and I was grateful to have parents that funded that for me. I am aware that there are children here whose parents who can’t fund art camps for them. So I would be responsible for seeking out talents in the BVI and raising funds in other to send students to further their craft and learn more about the arts elsewhere,” Brathwaite said.
She is also hoping to influence policymakers to include performing arts in the local school’s curriculum with the hope of further encouraging youngsters to develop their creativity.
More about Brathwaite
Brathwaite, who just recently returned home after completing her Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree from the University of Miami has her eyes set on performing on Broadway, television, and film.
Before moving to the US, Brathwaite — a pianist, model and cook — attended the Cedar International School.
No pageant this year
Chairperson of the Miss BVI World Organization Damion Grange told BVI News that there was no pageant held this year.
He said this was because it is ‘very costly’ to stage an actual show.
“This year was particularly challenging for us to mobilise the sponsorship necessary to offset this cost,” Grange said.
He continued: “We believe a contributing factor is due to the fact that the territory and more specifically, business are still in recovery mode following the national disasters of 2017. Consequently, as a committee we felt it was more financially prudent to forego the show and place our focus on what we believe to be our more community-focused initiative; and that’s the Premier’s Beauty With a Purpose Awards.”
Grange said the committee identified Brathwaite because she “embodied” the qualities to uphold the legacy of Beauty With A Purpose by presenting a “compelling Beauty With A Purpose initiative.”
“Additionally, Ms Brathwaite is talented and driven, which all played a role in the consideration,” he added.
Meanwhile, several persons were awarded the Premier’s Beauty with a Purpose Philanthropic Awards at the coronation ceremony.
Cicely Malone was recognised as an ‘Outstanding Philanthropist’, Ernest “Popeye” Scatliffe as a ‘Lifetime Philanthropist’ and the Virgin Islands Search and Rescue as an ‘Outstanding Philanthropic Organisation’.
Dr Robert Mathavious, former First Lady Lorna Smith and Robin Gaul were also given Special Recognition Awards.
The awards were launched in 2016, and it seeks to honour individuals, groups or organisations with a proven record of exceptional generosity who, through direct hands-on or financial support, demonstrates outstanding civic and charitable responsibility, and whose generosity encourages others to take philanthropic leadership roles in our community, Grange said.
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