Jovan Stefani

I cannot believe it's been almost ten years since I won the prestigious title of Miss Teen World Canada. The pageants still hold a special place in my heart, and stand out as one of the most important highlights of my teen years. At a time where I was struggling with self-esteem and direction, Miss BC /Miss Teen World Canada pageants showed me just how capable I was at achieving a positive path for myself, and, set a stage to allow me to positively give, empower and inspire others . Throughout my year as Miss Teen World Canada, I had several opportunities to travel, meet new people, learn and practice about public speaking, and participate in many fundraising events to raise money for causes that are important to me.

My community platform in the MTWC pageant was about advocacy against Child Abuse and Neglect, and the resiliency and possibilities of survivors. My work on this platform continued after my pageant year was over, and I pursued a degree in Child and Youth Care at Vancouver Island University with the plans on becoming a Child Protection worker. I spent a few years in various roles in youth mentorship, family support and child development, before getting married and starting a family of my own. I now have three amazing children, Kason (5), Koen (3) and my daughter Maria (1), whom I only hope will be just as excited to participate in pageants when she gets older, as well as, my wonderful husband (Curtis) and biggest supporter, whom stays busy travelling the country with his career in Industrial construction and management.

This past year I was thrilled to have given the gift of surrogacy to a friend, whom due to cancer could not bare her own children. The experience was very impactful, and I once again was humbled by my abilities to help others.

After having my first born, I decided that I wanted to take a break from social work, and start my own business in the Health and Fitness industry, and from there, MGI ( Moms Got It Health and Fitness program) was born . MGI is a female orientated health and Fitness program, with an emphasis on holistic wellbeing and woman empowerment. Myself, along with a few other coaches, offer personal training, group fitness classes and women circles throughout the Mid Vancouver Island area, as well as online programs and holistic nutrition consulting. Over the past few years I have had the opportunity to work with hundreds of inspiring women, and my experiences and learning through pageants have definitely influenced my work with MGI. The MGI motto is "You CAN. You WILL. You GOT THIS", which is an attitude I first recall believing the night I was awarded my title of Miss Teen World Canada , something I had worked very hard towards.

Pageantry gives an opportunity to explore your passions, values and talents, while equipping you with tools that will shine through for years to come, and I think I am a great example of this. It's a fantastic way to network and gain new life-long friendships, and broaden your horizon outside of your comfort zone.

I hope every individual whom could benefit from such a pageant program, has the opportunity to do so. I sure appreciated the opportunity myself nearly a decade ago; it will always be a highlight of my life to look back upon.

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