The first openly transgender winner of Miss Netherlands, Rikkie Valerie Kollé, was crowned last week.
The jury said she
radiated throughout the show [and had] a strong story with a clear mission”.
Kollé, 22, told Newsweek,
I am proud, and the night was amazing.”
Kollé said that she got into pageantry because it gave her a voice:
You can talk about what you want to change in society or what you think you can offer.”
But she said that as well as support, there was a negative element with people online sending her daily messages telling her to kill herself.
They see us as monsters.
The only thing I want to say to the haters is, thank you because you’re giving me a bigger platform than I can ever imagine.
I want to speak up for the trans people who need it, as a little kid I didn’t have someone to look up to.
I want to be that role model and inspiration for others.”
Posting on Instagram the beauty wrote,
I made my community proud and showed it can be done.
Yes, I am a trans woman and I would like to share my story, but I am also Rikkie and that is what counts for me.
I did this on my own strength and enjoyed every moment.”
Kollé will now compete in El Salvador for Miss Universe, in December.
(Photo, Instagram; via PinkNews)