Last Saturday, Anna Suengam-iam took the crown of Miss Universe Thailand 2022 and was officially announced as the Thailand representative for the prestigious Miss Universe stage this year.
Out of 29 contenders, fans initially did not see Anna winning the title as she was fully Thai compared to the other beauty queens who are mostly of mixed heritage.
Anna did not back down and continued to shine despite the odds, proving to be the true underdog of the competition.
While her grace and beauty captured the attention of many, her honesty about how she was raised truly touched the hearts of the audience.
Anna informed the Thai media without any hint of embarrassment that both of her parents had worked as trash collectors for the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration and that the majority of her toys when she was a child had been retrieved from waste and restored by her parents.
She said that she did not have the same opportunities to play with other children her age since her parents often left the house at 3 am to go to work and did not return until 7 pm to go to bed.
The only other time she had the opportunity to leave the house was when her father took her for a spin on the trash truck that he drove.
Due to her parents’ busy schedule, Anna was raised by her grandmother, who fed her with food that was donated by members of the general public to be distributed to monks as alms.
She said that her grandmother was her primary source of Buddhist education throughout her infancy and adolescence and that she has carried those lessons with her into her adult life.
The beauty queen has already participated in and won a number of beauty pageants prior to joining the Miss Universe Thailand 2022 competition. According to Anna, her ultimate goal was to win the title of Miss Universe Thailand.
Anna told the media after being named Miss Universe Thailand 2022 that the competition had taught her that everyone, regardless of where they came from or how they got started in life, is capable of achieving success if they have a desire and follow that ambition with self-confidence.
She expressed her hope that those who are disadvantaged financially or who feel as if they have no prospects for the future could find motivation from her tale.
They shouldn’t give up hope, but they should have the courage to dream and work hard to make their dreams come true, just as Anna has. She emphasised, above all else, the need to diligently study.
Anna attended the Faculty of Liberal Arts and Science at Kasetsart University, where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree with first-class honours.
She is now preparing to compete for the title of Miss Universe.