Toni-Ann Singh stepped into the history books by becoming the fourth Jamaican to be crowned Miss World.
The 23-year-old psychology and women’s studies major, who won the title over 100 representatives at the annual pageant in London on Saturday, Dec. 14, follows in the footsteps of Carole Joan Crawford in 1963, Cindy Breakespeare in 1976 and Lisa Hanna in 1993.
In the moments following the coronation, Singh posted to social media, expressing her gratitude to those who assisted with her journey to the crown.
“My Jamaica, sweet Jamaica, we did it,” she wrote. “My heart is filled with love and gratitude. Thank you so much for believing in me. You pushed me to believe in myself. I am not only honoured but humbled to be the 69th Miss World. Thank you to my family and to my friends. The love and support you poured into me now allows me to pour into the world.”
Second place went to Miss France Ophély Mézino, with the third spot going to Miss India Suman Rao.
Singh, who also won the talent segment of the pageant with a performance of Whitney Houston’s “I Have Nothing,” shared the Miss World win with young girls around the globe.
“To that little girl in St Thomas, Jamaica, and all the girls around the world, please believe in yourself,” she wrote. “Please know that you are worthy and capable of achieving your dreams. This crown is not mine but yours. It’s for you to truly understand that no matter where you’re from and the cards you’re dealt in life, your dreams are valid. You have a purpose.”
Her list of acknowledgments also extended to the franchise holders for the local pageant, Culture Minister Olivia “Babsy” Grange and the Miss World organization.
“I am willing and ready to do the work; to officially be the face that represents the core of Miss World, ‘Beauty with a Purpose,’” Singh said. “And last, but of course not least, thank you, God. Thank you for allowing me to walk the path towards my purpose. My heart is full.”
Singh charmed her way throughout the entire three-hour production, starting with her introduction in the Dances of the World segment which was set to the popular track “Toast” by reggae sensation Koffee.