St. John’s Antigua- Great things often come in small in packages. The old adage might be a bit cliché but for Queen of Carnival delegate Andrena Athill, it could not be any closer to the truth.
Unwrapping herself in an interview with OBSERVER Media, the petite delegate revealed that if she is crowned Queen of Carnival 2012, one of the social issues she hopes to address is cancer awareness and education.
“I have had a few family members who have passed away from the disease; it runs under my father’s side of the family, affecting the men specifically so it really hits home,” she said. “Also, in our society, I find a lot of men are not knowledgeable about prostate cancer and a lot of people in general are not knowledgeable about what they should do to prevent the disease.”
As if that were not enough, Andrena also hopes to tackle education issues that are affecting the nation’s youth.
The Miss Myst delegate believes that young people are not achieving as they should because of lack of motivation. Therefore, she hopes to fill that gap by developing innovative ways of getting youths excited about learning and pursuing academic excellence.
Andrena also expressed interest in developing workshops centered on educating youths on ways in which to guard themselves against social pressures and become role models for their peers.
Her relationship with her mother, Andrena said, has been the foundation that has helped her develop a healthy and positive self-image. Athill admitted that she doesn’t struggle with insecurities, mainly because of the way in which her mother carries herself and the advice she had passed on to her at a tender age.
Her encouragement to younger females is to explore what they enjoy and what makes them stand out from among their peers then remain loyal to that in spite of what others might say; “get interested in yourself,” she said.
From a much lighter side, what you’d be surprised to know about the queen hopeful, as she said comically, is that she enjoys cooking and is quite the chef whenever present in the kitchen.
“Yes! I can actually cook and don’t burn things,” she said.
Because cooking can sometimes consume a lot of time, one would think that that Andrena has no problem with waiting. However she told OBSERVER Media that one of the things that greatly annoys her is lateness. Describing herself as being a “stickler for time”, Andrena said that she acquired that aspect of her personality from her father, who taught her from a young age, to always be on time.
Although she enjoys going to the beach, Andrena is not exactly like a fish in the water. Having a laugh at herself, she said that she prefers to stay closer to the shore because that is where man was created to be, on land.
If we are lucky, the former dancer might show us that having retired from dancing after ending high school, she hasn’t lost all her skills.
She can be seen in action on the night of July 30, in competition with five other delegates who will be putting on a show that is sure to make headlines.