Amanda Ng, a Royal Palm Beach resident starting fifth grade at Cypress Trails Elementary School this year, was crowned the National USA Junior Ambassador Preteen on Aug. 3, taking home the Spirit of Pageantry award for building friendships and promoting sportsmanship.
Ng also took first place in Talent and Community Service. To win the awards, she competed in pageants based on community service and worked hard all year preparing for her national competition.
The National USA Jr. Ambassador pageant is run by former pageant contestant Kristin Thurston and her mother, Barbara, teaching young girls to form friendships, help others and build confidence.
The Junior Ambassador Pageant is an open national pageant and was started to offer a national opportunity to girls across the country. “This pageant was founded on the ideal of promoting success instilling the values of leadership, integrity, character and confidence,” Thurston said. “We believe these are important qualities that will help young women conquer the world.”
In preparing for the pageant, Ng coordinated a “Build-A-Bear” drive and raised 50 Build-A-Bears for the Children’s Cancer Center in Tampa, but more importantly, inspired the builders to help others. Ng also wrote a book, Colors by the Day, and reads it to the children in the pediatric ward of Palms West Hospital every three months. This book helps the children talk about their feelings. She is currently working on her second book.
Ng also visits the Royal Manor Nursing Home each December with Beanie Babies for the residents.
“I’m happy to go because this is where my great-grandmother died, and I feel like I’m visiting her each time I go, but the sad part is, when I get to know a new one, they may not be there the next year,” Ng said. “I continue to go because there’s always new grandmas and grandpas that need cheering up during the holidays each year.”
Ng always invites at least two new friends to join each year, and there are always at least 10 kids during the visit.
When asked what she wants to do with her crown and title Ng replied, “I want to encourage more kids in my community to do community service and I am happy to make appearances to help my local businesses and nonprofits.”
ABOVE: Ng with her trophies.