2020 Nov 16
The Sri Lankan name has yet again been given the spotlight in international waters, when Sachin Witharana emerged victorious and bagged the title, Mr. South Asia Australia at the Miss South Asia Australia Pageant (MSAA), held in Victoria, Australia, in 2020.
The Miss Sri Lanka Australia (MSLA) and the Miss South Asia Australia (MSAA) Pageants incorporating Miss, Mr, Mrs, Teen Mr and Teen Miss titles are held annually, with participants from India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal and Afghanistan. The pageant involves trainers with international runway experience in Milan, Paris, London and Berlin Fashion Weeks; and judges comprising Directors of other renowned pageants held in Australia. Due to the outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic, the pageant has been held online this year.
Modelling has always been a part of Sachin’s life, as he had been participating in photoshoots while completing his Bachelor’s Degree in Sri Lanka. He had initially wanted to give primary focus to his career as an Engineer and then shift focus to pursue his passion for modelling, but as he describes, it was a sign from the universe that he should be more involved in modelling when he received the opportunity to participate in the Miss South Asia Australia Pageant. He had been learning and gathering immense knowledge from some of the veterans in the modelling industry; namely, Sameera Weerasinghe, Brian Kerkoven, and Lou Ching Wong. Brian Kerkoven, especially, has been Sachin’s mentor, supporting him and correcting his blunders right throughout this journey.
Sachin expressed his gratefulness, for the support system that he is blessed with. His aunt, Romaine Ferdinands, apart from his own family, has been Sachin’s main supporter, encouraging him to take part in the Miss South Asia Australia Pageant, while experiencing a total lockdown in Melbourne. He had to undergo online training by interacting with many leading guest speakers on fashion, modelling, personal branding, leadership, cultural engagement, positive mindset, marketing and also had the opportunity to gather advice from past winners of pageants held across Australia.
Although Sachin is quite a hot topic in the modelling industry these days, he aims to shine just as bright when pursuing his career as an Electrical Power Engineer. He aims to continue his education until he unlocks a PhD and is working hard on becoming a renowned Sri Lankan Electrical Engineer and a Chartered Engineer in Australia.
With the title of Mr. South Asia Australia, Sachin unlocked many opportunities to represent the South Asian community in Australia in the fashion industry, engage with the community, be a community ambassador representing the younger generation of Sri Lanka, interact with many community leaders, participate in major multicultural events, sporting events and take part in mainstream fashion shows. By being in the eye of the public, Sachin intends to become an active community ambassador and represent the younger generation of Sri Lanka, spread happiness and kindness with the use of his platform, build temples of worship and help children and the elderly that are facing unfortunate circumstances, to his best ability.
Needless to say, Sachin is truly an inspiration for all the youngsters out there, who dreams about making a change one day.