A beauty queen from Kettering is hoping her bid to become Miss England will help the battle to beat cancer.
Stephanie Smith is a finalist in Miss England’s East Midland competition and as part of her entry she is raising money for charities Beauty with a Purpose and Hope Against Cancer.
It’s a cause close to Stephanie’s heart after she lost her dad David to cancer last year.
Stephanie said: “For me this is personal.
“Cancer stole from me and I want to beat it.
“But above all I want to make my dad proud and make a difference in his honour.”
David worked at a hospice in Kent and brought joy to those there, not knowing it was where he would spend the last weeks of his life.
As part of Stephanie’s fundraising she has been inspired to volunteer at a hospice herself.
During her dad’s treatment Stephanie had a smear test which came back with an abnormal result.
She had a small procedure and everything is now OK, but she is campaigning to lower the age of a smear test to 18.
She said: “It’s an absolute no-brainer.
“If you can drink and smoke at 18, why can’t you have a test that could potentially save your life? Why are we waiting until 25?
“We cannot control every aspect of cancer, by any means.
“But we can control the appointment to save a life.
“I recently made contact with a young woman who has just found out she has cervical cancer.
“She has two young children and speaking with her broke my heart as I understand how a family’s world can be turned upside down by this awful illness.
“She is fighting and has also helped me get the message out for the smear test age to be lowered.”
Stephanie is now hoping to use the Miss England competition as a platform to get her message out there.
She is fundraising online for the Hope Foundation For Cancer Research and has already raised more than £400.
To donate, click here.