April 9, 2012 - 5:55pmUpdated: April 10, 2012 - 8:34am
Ali Sarchuk. Screen captured from Facebook.
A Prince Albert woman is elated after being selected as the only Saskatchewan competitor vying for the title of Miss Universe Canada, held May 19 in Toronto.
"It actually started way back when I saw the movie "Miss Congeniality," which is kind of corney," laughed 22-year-old Ali Sarchuk, who got the acceptance call in January and has been training and fundraising for her trip to Toronto ever since.
However, Sarchuk says the road to pageantry was a tough one, riddled with high school bullying and body image issues.
"The (challenges) from highschool extremely put a damper on a lot of things in my life. I just want to kind of prove to everyone that your past doesn't have to define your future," Sarchuk said.
"So far I'm very proud of what I've accomplished."
Sarchuk will be competing against Jenna Talackova, the transgendered beauty queen who made headlines after she was initially banned from the pageant.
"I strongly am for her being in there, I mean she is a female at this point. I'm just going in there with my head held high, and looking to make friends with her and just have the best experience possible."
Over the next five weeks, Sarchuk is working to secure sponsors for her flights and evening gown. She's also being marked on how much money she can raise for SOS Children's Villages, the pageant's charity.