What do you get when you mix a teaspoon of hard work, a pinch of determination, a dollop of beauty and a sprinkle of focus? Simple – you get Mrs Sri Lanka Caroline Jurie who was crowned Mrs World 2020 in Las Vegas on 6 December – a night to remember for Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka born Caroline is a poster child for what dreaming big and having a supportive husband can get you. Based in Dubai these past few years, winning a crown and becoming a reigning beauty queen had always been her dream; but this dream was no easy feat and nor was it supported by everyone.
Sadly, Caroline found out the hard way, fending for herself with the determination of not only winning this prestigious world title but also bringing home a once won crown.
A former sales executive at Virgin Megastore, Caroline emerged winner from among 51 other finalists. But strip away the glittering gown and sparkling crown, and Caroline is a down-to-earth, kind and simple human being, who doesn’t fancy big brands for their namesakes – instead, she enjoys travelling or simply being at home with her young family.
In an exclusive interview upon Mrs World’s arrival in Sri Lanka, Ashwini Vethakan spoke to the beauty queen and mother of one in what we’re calling a heart-to-heart on the Mrs World competition, her emotions about Sri Lanka’s role in making her dream come true, her reflections on winning the title and what her new role could mean for her family.
Ladies and gentlemen, Living presents the real Caroline Jurie.
Q: Could you tell us about yourself from before you won the crown?
A: I was living in Dubai, working in sales and marketing for Virgin Megastore. I came to Sri Lanka after about four years and applied to take part in the locally sourced Mrs Sri Lanka pageant. It was here that I was selected to represent Sri Lanka.
Q: Could you describe how you felt at that moment when the winner of the crown was announced?
A: Honestly, I just couldn’t breathe! I remember really struggling for air. It was so emotional. Even now when I think about the moment our country’s name was called, I break down in tears!
Q: One of the questions asked at the Mrs World pageant was what you’d do if you won the crown – and you spoke about your ‘Be You’ campaign. Would you mind explaining the ultimate goal of it?
A: The ultimate goal of the Be You campaign would be to help abused and victimised young children – those who suffer from depression and come from underprivileged backgrounds. I want to give these young children their lives back by sup-porting and helping them.
DATE OF BIRTH
5 October 1992
St. Sebastian Girls’ School (Kandana)
Listening to music
Nishantha Deepal (husband)
Eliza Caroline (daughter)
Her ‘Be You’ campaign*
When she plans something and it just won’t happen!
WANTED TO BE
A saviour to the children who are suffering
To be a role model for parents and children
MOTTO IN LIFE
Always choose what’s first and do the right thing
Q: To get where you are today – to reach that stage in Las Vegas on 6 December – would have been quite the journey. Can you tell us about your recollections on how you got there?
A: It truly was the hardest journey when I reflect on the last few months. From the number of times my visa was rejected, to rejoicing when I found out it was finally accepted and to prepping for the Mrs World interview – which mind you, I did in a month!
For the pageant practice itself, where I was trained to walk, it was my fellow model Chula (Chulpadmendra Kumarapathira-na) who helped me. It was basically all a big game and you have to sacrifice so much in order to play it!
Q: What do you think Sri Lanka lacks in terms of fostering more young married women to vie for the title Mrs Sri Lanka for Mrs World?
A: Firstly, we lack the basic support these women need from the beginning. As a team, we should be supported technically and even encouraged because after all, we’re carrying our country’s flag.
It is not our name that we take pride in showcasing but that of our country. Financially too, we need support; they shouldn’t leave us to fend for ourselves!
Q: Describe your happy place…
A: Being at home surrounded by all my loved ones.
Q: How would you define ‘success’?
A: By focussing and prioritising your life, and working hard to get where you want to be.
Q: And how would you define ‘beauty’?
A: It is not what’s on the outside; it’s only really what’s on the inside that can measure how genuinely beautiful a person is – it’s inner beauty.
Q: How do you see yourself balancing your new role as Mrs World and your young family?
A: It’s all about time management. When it’s work, it’s work; but at the same time, when it’s time to focus on my daughter and family, then that will be my priority.
Q: Can you tell us how you relax?
A: I like to travel to new places and simply lounge in a hotel!
Q: What are you most passionate about?
A: Children – and ensuring that they have a future by helping them get to where they want to be.
Q: What is the best advice you have received in your industry?
A: Don’t listen to what others say, keep your husband happy, focus on your dreams and don’t give up.
Q: What is your message to our readers and Sri Lankans about ‘unity’?
A: It’s simple. Help one another; encourage one another. As citizens of the same land, the ultimate goal is our nation – so do it for the country.
Q: What would be your advice to the next Mrs Sri Lanka?
A: The first thing these lovely women need to remember is that you won’t get anywhere without your husband’s support. So get his blessings. There will be a lot of people trying to steer you in various directions. Be true to yourself, make choices that will keep not only yourself happy but your family too. Be strong and focus on the ultimate goal… your dream.