Plus-Sized Pageant Finds Small Participant Pool | NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

Plus-Sized Pageant Finds Small Participant Pool

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    An Arlington woman thinks her Plus Teen USA pageant is the perfect way for plus-sized girls to celebrate themselves and have fun, the problem is, she's having a hard time getting teens to participate.

    Jacqueline Lawrence is organizing the pageant, which is specifically for teenagers with dress sizes 12 and up.

    "I want them to walk away with a renewed sense esteem, self image, self worth," Lawrence said. "Just a renewed sense of self."

    Lawrence is a plus size model and pageant winner herself. In her native California, she was the local Big Bold Beautiful queen twice, and she entered a national pageant, too.

    But Lawrence said it has been tough to find contestants for her pageant.

    One contestant thinks a lack of self-confidence might be partially to blame.

    "When you are bigger size, you are teased and ridiculed for being bigger size," said 18-year-old Sativa Smith, a UT Arlington student.
    Lawrence said she agrees and parents could help solve the problem.

    "Lots of girls actually would be reluctant to sign up," Lawrence said. "I think it starts at home, I think often times the parents don't instill that self worth in plus-size girls. I hear it all the time from plus-size girls."