Jamaican wins Miss World title, says will work for sustainable change

LONDON (Reuters) - Jamaica's Toni-Ann Singh was crowned as Miss World 2019 on Saturday and said she wanted to use her title to work for "sustainable change" for women and their children.

Asked about the value of beauty contests in today's world of #MeToo and the drive for equality and respect for women, the 23-year-old graduate of Florida State University said beauty for her was the least important aspect of her achievement.

"I want to make a change that's sustainable. So if we're talking women... it needs to be something that will make sure that their children and their children's children have a different value of life," an overjoyed Singh told reporters after winning the title in London.

Singh did not specify what kind of change she had in mind.

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Miss USA 2019 winner Cheslie Kryst
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Miss USA 2019 winner Cheslie Kryst
This is #MissUSA 2019 @CheslieKryst. ✨ ⠀ __ Miss USA aired live from @GrandSierra in @RenoTahoe only on @FOXTV. #RenoTahoe
A once in a lifetime moment becomes a lifelong memory. Welcome to the sisterhood, @CheslieKryst. ✨ #RenoTahoe
#MissUSA 2019 is... NORTH CAROLINA! Welcome to the sisterhood, @CheslieKryst. 👑 #RenoTahoe
For months, my alarm rang daily at 4:45am so I could get in a morning workout. In the weeks leading up to my departure for Miss USA, I’d also come home and get in a second workout—30 to 45 minutes on the bike or elliptical. I gave up pasta, fried food, and dessert (with the occasional sweet treat on the weekends). I hated every second of my workout and nutrition regimen. But I’m thrilled that I felt confident and proud to strut my hard work across the Miss USA stage this week. One more day ‘til finals!!
I felt AMAZING walking into my Miss USA interview this morning in this red two piece by @gregoryellenburg!! I can confidently say I’ve never loved an interview outfit more than this one! Prelims are tonight. Here we go!!
It’s the 28th and I just turned 28!! I’m thrilled to be able to spend my birthday competing for the title of Miss USA. Many thanks to everyone for all of the birthday messages and calls and thanks to my pageant sisters for singing me Happy Birthday (and even eating a little cake with me 🙃🙃 shh). Huge thanks to @shopfoxylady for sponsoring this cute and comfy @sherrihill jumpsuit for me to wear on my special day! 😊❤️
Miss USA registration day one in the desert!! #RenoTahoe #MissUSA
Just before the UNCF Mayor’s Masked Ball started! No mask, but I wore a shiny hat 😉 HUGE thanks to @shopmckenziejades for this stunning @tarikedizofficial gown. I got compliments on it all night!!
I was going to say this suit makes me feel like a first lady, but I’m actually feeling pretty presidential. 😎 • • Many thanks to Lula’s Boutique for dressing me in this gorgeous @stjohnknits suit for the Shades of Green fashion show today! Huge thanks to @theportiakee for working so hard to involve me, make me feel welcome, and highlight my blog, @whitecollarglam, during the luncheon!! Another thanks to @jinalaw for slaying my hair just in time for the show. The event was fantastic and the 700+ attendees made for a fun and engaged audience. Who’s coming next year? 👀 #SOG2019 #ShadesOfGreen #keepingeventsepic
Fave question from today’s Triangle Daddy-Daughter Dance: Are you a princess? Me: No, I’m a queen. 💁🏾‍♀️👑😂 • Many thanks to @shopmckenziejades for this dress that had me feeling like Queen C
Guess who’s presenting at the Carolina Country Music Awards tonight? 😘💃🏽 Many thanks to @shopfoxylady for this fun @jovanifashions gown!

"It's OK to celebrate things like beauty and attributes like strength and those things. But this is so much more," she said as she hugged her proud parents, Jahrine and Bradshaw.

Describing herself as a "changed woman" after the experience of taking part in the Miss World competition, Singh added: "There's no way I could chalk it up to just being about beauty, because that's the last on the list, honestly."

Singh, who sang a version of the late singer Whitney Houston's "I have nothing" in the competition, received her crown from last year's winner, Vanessa Ponce of Mexico.

Jamaicans attending the event hailed Singh's win as a triumph also for their Caribbean island nation.

"The fact that Miss World is won by a black person is very, very significant to us because it represents a lot in terms of our culture, in terms of how far the world has moved on," said audience member Christine McDermott, who lives in London.

(Reporting by Sarah Mills and Reuters TV; Editing by Gareth Jones)

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