For both of Delta’s pageant hopefuls, the journey is more important than the crown.
On the Canada Day long weekend, Minette Gendur and Jaskiran Kaur will be competing in the Mrs. B.C. and Miss B.C. pageants, respectively. Both are hoping the pageant will be a positive and empowering experience.
“It was sort of a timing where I thought, ‘You know what, I need to focus on something that is really positive.’” Gendur, 43, said. She will be competing in Mrs. B.C. from June 30 to July 2.
Over the course of the pageant, which includes Miss Teen B.C. as well as Miss and Mrs. B.C., contestants will receive training in public speaking, modelling, manners and etiquette, self-defence, healthy living and leadership. They are also participating in a large scale fundraiser for Cops for Cancer.
For the North Delta career mom of two, this was the most important part of the pageant, as her uncle had recently been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.
“I feel like all that I really want is to feel proud about what we’ve accomplished, we being me and my family. So the fundraising component is a really big deal to me,” she said.
But she’s also looking forward to the talent show part of the pageant. There, she’ll be singing a song with her six-year-old daughter.
“I’m really trying to incorporate my family, because that’s kind of like the differentiation between the Miss B.C. and the Mrs. B.C.,” she explained. “For me, if it’s Mrs. B.C., it’s me and my family doing it, not just me.”
Mrs. B.C. isn’t as well known in the community, Gendur said, and that’s something she hopes will change.
“It’s really important that it targets younger people for the whole self-development and giving them the confidence to face the world ahead,” she said. “But it’s also really good for people my age because it shows our support for that too. We get in there.”
Kaur, 20, is one of those young people looking for confidence.
She came to Canada from India when she was 19 to attend Kwantlen Polytechnic University. Currently, she’s studying for a computer information systems diploma, but hopes to change to a degree in the future.
For her, the main draw for taking part in Miss B.C. was to build her confidence.
“I want to do something out of my comfort zone, so I thought I should take part in Miss B.C.,” Kaur explained. “It doesn’t matter if I win or lose, because it is the time when we have to learn something in our life.
“I thought it was the best time to take a step in my life, and be part of Miss B.C.”