My name is Melarie Eustaquio and I was crowned as the very first Junior Miss BC in 2017. I came to Miss BC two years ago, at only twelve years old, unsure of what to expect. I joined with hopes of increasing my self-confidence, and to simply see what I would find. I was honored to share such precious moments that I will never forget with every contestant. Walking into the training that very first day, I would have never guessed that I would walk out with a crown. This opportunity has allowed me to increase my leadership skills, use my influence to help others, connect with my community, evolve my public speaking skills, and increase the self-confidence that I lacked prior.
Throughout these years, I was able to attend amazing events like the Torchlight Parade, the Fusion festival, the Santa Parade, and represent my Filipino heritage and culture in the Pinoy Fiesta Festival, and Una hirit Festival multiple times.
Some of the most rewarding experiences I had were when I was privileged with the opportunity to volunteer at organizations like Cops for Cancer, fundraise for the support of families affected by BC Wildfires with Red Cross and volunteering at the sparkle project. I also hold very dearly being able to be published on Asian News Daily, Absolutely Filipino Magazine, being interviewed on live television, and having attended photo shoots!
At twelve, I held very big dreams, and I knew very clearly that I wanted to make a difference in others' lives and this program gave me every opportunity to be able to do so and more. I was blessed with a platform to encourage people my age to dream big. With this, I used my platform to speak to the kids in my middle school, in 2018, about being brave and coming out of our comfort zones to accomplish our dreams. My goal was to help others see how much of a difference they could make in the world starting with themselves. This opened the door to creating a club in my school that allowed students to practice leadership roles and take steps towards their dreams.
Today, I have just finished my first year of high school, enjoying taking part in all my favorite hobbies, and I am excited for whatever the future holds!
Junior Miss has taught me that anyone can have the power to make a difference in their communities and has given me the self-confidence I needed to make a difference in my own life as well. Moreover, what I found was a family of amazing fellow titleholders that I love and still look up to today. All whom, never fail to have and support each other's backs. I cherish every memory with them and I could not ask for better role models. I'm sure that even after I hand over my title on July 1st, back on the stage where I began on this journey two years ago, the Miss BC program will never fail to consistently teach me new things.