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Philippines’ pride Catriona Gray is now fulfilling her duties as the reigning Miss Universe for 2019.

Earlier today, the new Miss Universe was at a press conference in Shangri–La The Fort, BGC, Taguig, to promote an event that is close to her heart: a children’s charity program. This, however, wasn’t her official homecoming yet.

Catriona, then, visited Gentle Hands in Quezon City, a rehabilitation center for children at risk. This was made possible by Frontrow, in partnership with Miss Universe Organization and Luis Chavit Singsong (LCS) group of companies.

Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray, with RS Francisco, Frontrow president, and Richelle Louise Singson-Micheal, LCS group of companies. (Kristofer Purnell)

“Giving is so important especially to children. What is wonderful is that they are going to experience joy and happiness this season,” the 24 year-old beauty queen shares.  “I hope that this will inspire each and everyone of you to open up your heart this Christmas and give whether it is small, large, or anything to make someone’s Christmas happy.”

According to Catriona, this gift giving program had already been organized a few months ago as part of the new activities of the Miss Universe. “This event was planned for the new Miss Universe of 2018 which just so happened to be a Filipina,” she explains.

With a great smile and genuine happiness on her beautiful face, the 24–year old says that she’s grateful to be part of the charity event. “I’m so happy to be here with the Miss Universe crown para sa Pasko ng Pilipinas.”

As an only child, Catriona admits that she always wanted to have siblings. She adds that that this is the reason on why underprivileged children are the focus of her advocacy. “I’m so happy to be here because I really work with children. They touched my heart because they are so pure, and these simple things make me happy.”

Prior to winning the beauty pageant, Catriona already started her “Paraiso: The Bright Beginnings Project” that aims to raise funds for underprivileged children from Smokey Mountain, a landfill area in Tondo, Manila.

Today, more than a hundred children from Gentle Hands benefited from this event. A fun-filled morning with Catriona brought smiles to all the children. The three private organizations also donated 1 million pesos to the foundation to help them support the children who are under their care.

“I think this is a perfect example of giving something simple as a gift, as a present, and it will really stay with them, and make them have an amazing positive outlook on the year that is to come,” she ends.

Thank you so much for your inspiring love and kindness, Queen Catriona!

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