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Edgware student in semi finals of Miss Teen Great Britain 2013
A 17-year-old student who was bullied at school has been selected as a semi finalist in Miss Teen Great Britain 2013.
Samira Sidhu, of Apex Corner, has fought off thousands of rivals to be selected as a semi finalist in the national beauty pageant for 13 to 19-year-olds.
Samira, who is about to start a beauty therapy course in central London, entered the competition at the beginning of the summer and has just discovered that she has made it through to the penultimate round.
The aspiring musician said: “I’ve always watched pageants on TV and I realised that it is more about what sort of person you are than about your looks.
“This was what made me interested in it.”
To enter the former St Mary’s High School, Hendon, pupil had to submit photographs of herself, and an interview form in which she was asked questions about her achievements and her personal qualities.
Samira said: “It would mean so much to me to get through to the finals.
“In the past I have been bullied really badly and this opportunity would give me the chance to become a positive role model.
“If I win I want to help other girls to be happy and confident.
“I want to show them that it is not ok to be bullied as the effects of bullying are lasting.”
Samira is required to undertake charity work and fundraising as part of the selection process for the competition.
As a result she is currently raising money for a children’s hospice in the Wirral and she hopes to start some work for animal charities soon.
In May 2013 Samira will find out whether she has been chosen to be one of the 60 finalists.
The winner will be decided in September 2013.
Samira said: “I am really hoping I make it through to the finals.”
The competition’s winner will become Miss Teen Great Britain 2013 and will win £1,000 prize money.
She will also be expected to act as a positive role model for teenage girls.
In her application Samira said: "If I were to win, the first thing I would do is use my title of Miss Teen Great Britain to speak to as many schools as possible about the rising issue of bullying.
"With the growth of social networking, cyber bullying is rapidly increasing.
"Abusive and threatening messages can be sent with the click of a button.
"Young people need to have a better understanding of the seriousness of sending such messages and the damaging effects it can have."