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Jalicia eyeing Top Model prize

Natanga Smith

Jalicia eyeing Top Model prize

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Jalicia Nightengale Hebson is looking to score another feather in her cap. The 23-year-old Barbadian, originally from Kinglsand, Christ Church, has been selected to be the Barbados representative in the Top Model UK competition.

Jalicia isn’t a stranger to the modelling arena and has been in various campaigns in Barbados before moving to Britain with husband Che.

While living in Worle,Weston-super-Mare, she did some small modelling jobs but soon despaired she would never make it big.

“After getting married I put my modelling career on hold to do some soul-searching. I came really close to giving up my dream of being a supermodel. I had spent a whole year doing small jobs here and there. I even worked part-time in a bar and running my own hair business.”

Jalicia said when things started to dry up she tried her hand at acting and was picked to be a background artist for an upcoming movie.

But friends and family told her she had come too far to let her dream die so when she saw an ad on a website for aspiring models to be in Top Model UK she uploaded her previous modelling experience.

It didn’t take too long to get a reply and two days after she was invited to an interview in London.

“I was so nervous and anxious but at the same time over the moon. When I got there I saw about 60 other girls and that’s when the real nerves kicked in. We all had to strip down to our underwear for four judges, including the director of Top Model UK Geoff Cox.”

Jalicia said not only were they interviewed on the spot but everything was being filmed and photographed at the same time.

The next day she was wracked with anxiety, awaiting to hear if she was a finalist: “My heart was throbbing hard and I was biting my nails, hoping I got through,” she said. She received the good news and went to three more interviews, the last being in December.

At that interview, the finalists were given their Top Model packs which was a guide to eveything they needed to prepare them for the competition.

The competition has different categories and Jalicia was put in the Worldwide category, which means she gets to represent her beautiful home country, Barbados.

An important part of the competition is raising money for a chosen charity and Jalicia has been given Children with Cancer UK for a chance to win the public’s charity vote awards which is the only category judged by the public.

Jalicia has a target of £1 000 and so far has raised £860.

“I am so happy with how things are going. I am so near to my target and even hope I can go over it. To raise the moneyI decided to host my own fashion show charity event on February 20. The event cluded supper, after-party, raffle and auction. It was well attended. I was so pleased at that.”

Jalicia said winning the competition would be a huge accomplishment and give her career the push it needs.

“I would love some support from my home country. The Top Model Worldwide is on Facebook and I need all the support and donations to win the charity vote.”

For now, Jalicia is working on her fitness and diet for the finals on March 9 where she is competing against others from South Africa and around the world.