RBL’s Christine Villafana is Ms CariFin 2016
The Ms CariFin contestants showed a high level of fitness, endurance, intelligence and aerobics skills, it was a tough call.
An excited section of the crowd greeted the announcement that Ms Republic Bank Christine Villafana had won the Ms CariFin Fitness Pageant 2016. The Ms CariFin Fitness Pageant took place on Sunday 5th June at the Sevilla Golf Course as part of CariFin’s Family Day and Cross Country event, and the lovely delegates did their best to take away the spotlight.
The fitness pageant, which started with a three minute dance routine, had the audience’s attention from the get-go as the dance teams from the various financial institutions displayed their slick and well rehearsed steps.
First Citizens stepped up the ante with a four-person team that had everyone glued to their performance. Villafana and her all-girl RBL also piqued the interest of the spectators with their energetic moves, while three time dance champion Guardian Group ensured that the heat stayed in the competition. First-timer ANSA Financial Services also made their presence felt with a neat routine, while the lone JMMB Group representative Sade Jones gave a good account of herself in an interesting solo performance.
But returning four time champions Central Bank seemed to have on the best dancing shows on the day, as their team delivered a splendid performance which infused a good mix of calisthenics, strength and stylish dance movement. CBTT eventually won the Ms CariFin dance routine by two points, and their delegate Karyn Stewart was pleased with her overall Ms CariFin experience. “Initially, I was hesitant to participate in the Ms. CariFin competition because I am not really the pageant type,” Stewart said. “However I am very glad I decided to step out of my comfort zone to represent Central Bank. The support I received and the overall camaraderie truly made it an enjoyable experience.”
Fitness level and endurance is a main criteria judged by the Ms CariFin aerobics competition, and this year’s contestants made the judging task very difficult as they all showed high levels of fitness and aerobics skills. Instructor Neil Diaz of Fitness Center Limited even had to tip his hat to the ladies as they moved in great unison and cohesion to follow his every move.
When Diaz wrapped up his aerobics session, it was on to the challenging Q&A segment. The delegates were asked questions pertaining to health, fitness and lifestyle choices. The audience could be forgiven if they thought a Ms Universe Pageant was in progress as the tension grew among the girls.
After the final question was answered, and the contestants did one last strut before the audience, Villafana was adjudged the overall winner for her poise, charm, confidence and splendid response. Villafana smiled from ear to ear as she received her crown from Curlissa Charles, Ms CariFin 2015.
“The feeling was a mixture of relief, excitement and humility,” reflected the Ms. CariFin winner. “I felt relief because all the girls were wonderful and there was definitely competition, excited because I emerged victorious and it means the beginning of great things ahead, and humble at the same time because I could not have done it without God’s will, the support of my RBL team, friends and relatives,” a beaming Villafana concluded.
A smiling Stewart continued her good day by winning the runner-up prize for Central Bank, while First Citizens’ Trudy Louison copped the second runner-up prize for her institution. Louison shared her experience, “I was asked how has CariFin changed my life and to my surprise and delight the audience applauded my answer to be the best. The butterflies in my stomach were fluttering excitedly as the countdown to the top three neared its conclusion,” Louison said. “Finally my name and First Citizens were announced as ‘second runner-up’. My face beamed with a sense of accomplishment as we posed for pictures with the Central Bank Governor Dr Alvin Hilaire.”
Ms CariFin Christine Villafana works at Republic Bank Limited’s High Street branch. Christine’s hobbies are artistry, dancing and going to the gym. “I was introduced to dance at the age of six at my primary school where my dance instructor discovered my talent for the art.”
She was able to land herself in the EMA’s Youth Ambassador’s Volunteer Program. There she was responsible for educating the public on various environmental topics through art. Her completed work was on display at a production and published in the EMA’s yearly calendar.
Christine has also danced for the Best Village and Soca Monarch competitions with Reminiscences Cultural Group and played with Les Enfants in the San Fernando Netball League.
Ms CariFin started in 2004 as part of CariFin’s Cross Country and Family Day. From its inception, the Ms CariFin competition has been the most highly anticipated event of that day. The participants must be able to demonstrate their commitment to health, fitness and to living a more active lifestyle; all while embracing CariFin’s ideals and values of Fun, Fitness & Friendship.