12 Months of Beauty, Swelia da Silva Antonio

12  Months of Beauty, Swelia da Silva Antonio

12 Months of Beauty is the organization behind Miss Grand Netherlands, Supermodel Netherlands, Supermodel Netherlands, Mister Global Netherlands and Miss and Mister Supranational Netherlands.
This year the organization started an online Beauty Pageant to select the dutch representatives for Miss Grand, Miss Supranational and Supermodel International.
After many assignments and challenges there are still 6 girls that made it to the finals and have a change to wear one of the BaroQco crowns.
We would like to get to know these 6 great girls and let them introduce themselves to the world.

Last, but not leas, Swelia da Silva Antonio

Who are you?

My name is Swelia Da Silva Antonio. I’m currently 23 years old and I live in the international
city of peace and justice, The Hague – the Netherlands. My parents have three children, of
which I’m the middle child and the only girl.
At the age of 2, my family and I moved from Angola to the Netherlands. Because of my
background as a migrant, my identity has always played a big role in my life. I see myself as a
curious being, who’s open to new things and very willing to learn and improve. With this, I
have to admit I’m also quite a perfectionist. Even though my character is still developing, I’m
confident in saying I’m a loyal friend, committed and optimistic. Almost like a dreamer.
Since I acquired my Bachelor’s degree, I may be referred to as a European Professional. After
a break, I’m eager to obtain my Master’s diploma in public administration, specializing in
governance of migration and diversity.

When and how did you enter the world of beauty pageants?

Growing up, ‘Miss’ was often used as a loving compliment by friends and family towards me.
That is, because in Angolan culture, pageant beauty queens are seen as competent and respected
representatives of their country. Of their people and society, if you will.
Of course this association positively affected the image I had of pageantry. However, I was
never interested in competing myself. Until I realised the role pageants and beauty queens have
on civil society. In my opinion, this is an excellent way to make an impact on people for positive
change. We have come so far with humanity yet there is still a long way to go, so we should
use every channel of communication to collectively do better.
Back in 2017, I went to the casting of Miss Africa Netherlands where I was selected. However,
I couldn’t participate due to my exchange to Sweden. When I returned, I decided to first finish
my studies. It was not until 2019 that I applied for that season of Miss Supermodel World Wide
Netherlands. Long story short, the 6 months journey was a true lesson awarded with the title of
1st Runner Up. I started season 2020 at 12 Months of Beauty shortly after that accomplishment.

Can you tell us your experience in the 12 Months of Beauty online pageant?
The national directors, Robin and Stefan, seemed to be warm persons from the start. Also, for
me, honesty and respect are at the foundation of every relationship and this is something the
team practices in their work ethics. In their own unique way they encouraged me to stand strong
in my identity, influenced by both my roots in Angola and my home in the Netherlands.
Being new to the pageant world also means that I’m open to the approaches presented. The
online feature of the pageant made room for innovative and out of the box ways of thinking. I
had a lot of fun completing the challenges. Apart from that, the challenges provided a
framework for me to go beyond my personal limits. During this journey I made mistakes, I
went through emotional roller coasters and so much more unforeseen happenings. All in all, I
feel very fortunate to have been a part of season 2020 at 12 Months of Beauty. I want to
encourage every girl to bet on herself – take the step.

What’s your life motto and how do you live your life by it?

Originally, my life motto is ‘para frente e o caminho’ which translates to ‘the way is forward.’
To me it’s a reminder that whatever happens, life will always go on. This is comforting for
the low and a reason to be joyful for every high. My mom, an extraordinary woman, made
sure I would grow up with a real warrior mentality.
I cope with the bad by focusing on my faith. As much as I can I celebrate the good, mostly
with people close to me while enjoying food. I invite everyone to acknowledge both, in your
own way and with your own motto. So that you can discover how to love life, but more
importantly, love the people that make life.

How will your life be 10 years from now?
Spiritually, I’m working towards getting to know myself in all the different aspects of life and
I want to focus more on my faith in God. Physically, the goal is to be in harmony with myself
and understand my body though self-love. All of this will help me to become a greater version
of myself.
When it comes to achievements, I’ll have finished my academic career and started a flourishing
business. Although I believe we continue to learn every single day. My vision is to use
experiences to interlink my various activities with my fields of interest, so that I can bring
public value. Especially to women in the black community, because I feel like that is a highly
vulnerable and underprivileged group. Children too as they are the future – the new generation.
Ultimately, I want to work on communities so they can upgrade. I believe that people are the
most precious thing to invest in, as they are the building stone for togetherness. In unity we can conquer all.

For now, we wish you all the best of luck during the final weeks of the pageant.

12 months of Beauty, Suzan Lips →

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