The Filipino gay community has reason to celebrate with the victory of John Jeffrey “Janjep” Carlos at the Mr. Gay World 2019 pageant held in Capetown, South Africa besting 21 representatives from all over the world.
Carlos reclaimed the title won by fellow countrymen John Raspado in 2017 and succeeded Jordan Bruno of Australia.
The 41-year-old native of General Trias, Cavite also bagged the Best in Written Exam and Best in National Costume special awards. Carlos wore a colorful Sarimanok-inspired costume, with Salakot top, created by designer by Razen Montero. It showcases the rich culture of the Philippines and embracing gender diversity.
“I still could not believe I won Mr. Gay World 2019. I have so many people to thank for who are behind this triumph. I want to thank God, my national director, my trainers, my family, and partner for their love and support,” Carlos posted on Instagram shortly after clinching the title.
Carlos, a Hotel and Restaurant Management graduate and businessman, also thanked the Filipino community and the Consulate General of the Philippines in Capetown, and the Mr. Gay World organization for which he is expected to be working in future projects and collaboration on his advocacies.
Aside from helping spread awareness for LGBTIQ equality, Carlos promotes his mental health awareness campaign #IllnessTo Wellness and has partnered with Mental Health PH, an organization that promotes mental health awareness throughout social media. “I will use my title to highlight mental health issues, particularly, depression faced by the LGBTIQ community on the global level,” Carlos said.
The 11th Mr. Gay World pageant was hosted by former Expresso presenter Ewan Strydom with guest performances by American boy band 5West and South African Tamara Dey. The Mr. Gay World pageant included a written evaluation on LGBTIQ issues, photo, sports and swimsuit challenge competition.
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