Philippine representative Samantha Bernardo was hailed as the first runner-up at the Miss Grand International competition held at the Show DC Hall in Bangkok, Thailand on March 27.
Samantha became the runner-up to the USA's Abena Appiah who was crowned as the winner.
Meanwhile, Ivana Batchelor from Guatemala was declared as the second runner-up. Aurra Kharishma from Indonesia became the 4th placer, while Lala Guedes from Brazil was the fifth placer.
During the final round of the competition, the top 3 candidates were asked, "If there is only one dose of COVID-19 vaccine left and you have to choose who you give it to, either a 15-year-old or a 70-year-old senior citizen, which one would you give it to and why?"
Samantha answered, "My heart goes to senior citizens because my mom is turning [into a] senior citizen. And I've experienced the loss of my dad four years ago, and I cannot afford to lose my mom. My heart goes to them because they are the most vulnerable during this time."
She added, "A 15-year-old has the stamina to fight the COVID-19 pandemic. And with proper exercise and healthy living, they can live with it. I know as well that every citizen here will choose and never afford to lose their parents. And so, I will choose senior citizen."
The Philippines has yet to win a Miss Grand International crown since the establishment of the beauty pageant.