Albuquerque Journal
Kansas Begaye of Rio Rancho was crowned Miss Indian World at the Annual Gathering of Nations pow wow in 2013

Miss Indian World 2014: Changing Their Lives, Changing the World

Christina Rose
4/22/14

The excitement is growing as 23 young women from all over the country are preparing to compete for the title of Miss Indian World 2014. The most prestigious of all pow wow royalty titles, Miss Indian World 2014 will represent the Indian nations and the Gathering of Nations pow wow as she travels the country, spreading goodwill and inspirational messages to young and old.

Contestant Brittany Clause, 23, Cayuga Nation, Six Nations Haudenosaunee, is entering the competition for her second consecutive year. “The pageant is not really a competition, it is about competing with ourselves and empowering each other for those shining moments that bring us to our fullest potential,” Clause told ICTMN.

As part of her presentation, Clause will promote the importance of empowering women. “All aboriginal women and communities across America suffer from historic trauma,” she said.

Clause connects the effects of “the ’60s scoop, the residential schools, and genocide,” with health disparities that include diabetes, alcohol, family and domestic violence. “I think it is truly honorable that the women who are coming from that background use those historic traumas to prosper into something beautiful to change those stereotypes today,” she said.

Kansas Begaye, 25, Dine, is the current Miss Indian World 2013, and is getting ready to pass on her crown. In a telephone interview, she offered advice to the incoming title-holder. “Take it one day at a time, it goes by very fast. Make a plan because the next thing you know, half a year is gone. Stick with your platform.”

Each contestant must present a platform, or source of inspiration she hopes to share with others over the coming year. Begaye’s 2013 platform was to encourage youth to believe in themselves, which she said is the biggest hurdle in becoming a success.

Being Miss Indian World gave her the opportunity to talk to the younger generation in many regions.

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