Laura Lehmann was raised by a single mother. The beauty title holder who represented the country in the Miss World 2017 pageant in China, credits her success in life to her parent Candy. She brought up her daughter instilling good values, provided for a top-notch education, and nurtured a mindset that served her well in the bid to become a beauty queen. She is now venturing into new territory, exploring a career in acting and hosting, and aspires to be just as strong as her mother had been.
“Your environment as a child will always have an impact on the person you will become,” Laura shares. “First of all, mine made me appreciate women. I saw [my mother] working very hard. She had to be a parent, teacher, friend and disciplinarian all at the same time. It showed me what women can do. I became very driven. I wanted to be the same [as she was]. I wanted to make a better life for us. It made me hungry,” Laura shared.
Each year, Beauty with a Purpose is granted to a contestant of Miss World. Each candidate proposes a project close to them, and Laura won during her year. It was no surprise that the young woman’s cause is to build a Milk Bank at the Jose Reyes Medical Center, where she would be able to help underprivileged mothers who cannot afford to buy milk for their babies. Most babies at the hospital are pre-mature, and several mothers have not yet been able to produce milk. It is a project close to Laura’s heart, having been born as a premature baby from a single mother. She is able to sympathize with the women and is eager to get the project off the ground.
The pageant’s official YouTube page published a small documentary about Laura’s cause. Her five-year plan includes the creation of the hospital’s first Milk Bank with the proper facilities to attend to the needs of infants. This includes a pasteurizer to sterilize the milk from viruses, an ultra-low freezer to store milk for months, and a mechanical breast pump to help mothers get their milk. “I want to be there for families and that’s why I chose this project,” she shared.
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The video posted online captures Laura holding back tears as she walks through the hospital corridors. During the on-camera interview, she makes an appeal. “When you look at the babies and you see how small they are, you realize how innocent they are. I don’t know why I was born the way I was born and why they were born here, but I realize you don’t choose where you’re born but you can choose what you do with your life. You can choose to help. I know as Miss World Philippines, I’m not Super Woman, and I can’t change the world, but if you do the little things, you can make a difference.” Laura’s Beauty with a Purpose project will take off by the last quarter of this year with help from Miss World’s London principals. Check back on the website for updates.
Read the full cover story about Laura Lehmann in the June 2018 Issue of Lifestyle Asia in leading bookstands now. For a digital copy download the FLIP100 app now.