MANILA — Actress Michelle Dee has a “game plan” to bring home the Philippines’ second Miss World crown after the 2013 victory of compatriot Megan Young.
Dee, 23, is set to fly this week to London, in time for the month-long pre-pageant activities ahead of the coronation night on December 14.
Speaking with reporters Wednesday during a send-off press conference for her Miss World bid, Dee said she believes she has prepared adequately for all aspects of the competition.
“My game plan is to really just do my best, because I have been training for months for all the respective categories for Miss World. All I can really do is do my best and be myself, be genuine, because I am kind at heart naman, and I hope the world sees that. My strategy is to show the world how beautiful the Filipinos are and what we have to offer as a country,” she said.
With her Miss World Philippines crown and upcoming stint in London, Dee follows the footsteps of her mother, Miss International 1979 Melanie Marquez.
Asked whether Marquez has given her tips on pageantry, Dee said she has helped her “become a lighter person, because I’m very serious.”
“I’ve been told that I [exude] a very serious façade, kaya tina-try niya lang ako ibakla, to have more fun. It helps with my personality enhancement din,” she said.
Given that Miss World champions “beauty with a purpose,” Dee said her personal advocacy of raising awareness about autism happens to align with that pageant criteria.
Dee has been collaborating with Autism Society Philippines, specifically to bring attention to the needs of children on the spectrum. In fact, she is already looking ahead to having an active role for the observation of Autism Month in January 2020.
For her Miss World campaign — the pageant organization assists in the advocacy of winning candidates — Dee is hoping to increase chapters of Autism Society Philippines in rural areas, noting the high number undiagnosed cases of autism due to lack of facilities and awareness.
Referring to joining pageantry, Dee said: “This isn’t what I dreamed to become when I was younger, but it is something that was born out of purpose, driven by my heart, because I know that I can do good. Without these motivations, without the drive in me to do so much good, I wouldn’t be where I am right now.”