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Miss Kent GB launches body positivity campaign

This year's Miss Kent GB has launched a campaign to encourage young men and women to embrace who they are.

Zoe Hetherington, of Lenham Road, Harrietsham, set up an Instagram page to share the brave stories of people who have overcome a lack of confidence.

Zoe Hetherington won the regional finals of Miss Kent GB 2019 in September
Zoe Hetherington won the regional finals of Miss Kent GB 2019 in September

The project, called BeYOUtiful, sees the beauty queen draw upon her battles with mental health and insecurities.

While studying for her marketing degree at Reading University in 2017, doctors diagnosed the 21-year-old with depression, something she had been suffering with for many years.

As a teenager she also had bad acne, which she still struggles with today.

She said her journey to accepting herself led her to this campaign.

"It is all about self-love and embracing who you are. I have tried everything for my skin. This is me, there is nothing I can do about it."

The page will share people's unique stories, ranging from hidden disabilities to plus-size modelling.

It will also encourage users to share five things they like about themselves, something Miss Hetherington says we don't do enough.

The former Cornwallis Academy student won her Miss Kent GB title in September.

As well as winning the overall competition, she said one of her biggest achievements was receiving the Best Beach Body award.

“It took me such a long time to accept that you only get one body and to embrace that there is only one me.”

The beauty queen spoke openly about her battles with depression earlier in the year
The beauty queen spoke openly about her battles with depression earlier in the year

Miss Hetherington said she feels like a role model to young women and hopes to make a difference in the community.

One way she aims to achieve this is by using her platform to promote body positivity.

She said: "A lot of people look on social media and compare themselves to others. I have a lot of young girls that look at what I post and I want to show the other side that you don't automatically see."

In the run up to the national finals, which will be held this February in Leicester, she has been busy volunteering at the ellenor hospice, in Gravesend, which supports families facing terminal illness.

She also hosted a charity fashion show in November, raising more than £600 for Cancer Research UK and Alex's Wish - which aims to eradicate Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, an aggressive form of Muscular Dystrophy.

To see the latest updates from her body-positive project head to her Instagram profile @beyoutiful.campaign.uk

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