MANILA -- Samantha Bernardo and the rest of the Top 10 of Miss Grand International shared messages of hope in a special segment introduced by the pageant amid the pandemic.
Wearing white dresses with gold accents, the ten candidates were given an opportunity to deliver an untimed speech on stage.
Taking her turn, Bernardo talked about how the COVID-19 pandemic "has brought despair, destruction, and death."
"Today, our world war has changed -- from armed conflicts to war on hunger, for better health care systems, [against] racism, and [for] education. It's an everyday battle that confronts all of us regardless of who we are and where we are from," she said.
Bernardo said she has always "lived up to my faith in humanity, cultural understanding, and respect for others," particularly as a Malaria Free Philippines spokesperson.
She promised to continue what she has started should she become the next Miss Grand International, and encouraged the public to join her.
"I will be a channel of hope, compassion, and unity, to stand informed and stop any form of war and violence in this world," she said.
"Join me as we work together in mending our conflicts and focusing on what truly matters. We are living under one sky, so let us all live peacefully where love is our language," she ended.
Bernardo is hoping to win the Philippines' first Miss Grand International crown.
She was handpicked by Binibining Pilipinas Charities Inc. to represent the country in Miss Grand International after reigning titleholder Aya Abesamis was unable to compete due to age restrictions.