Woman with autism qualifies for Miss Thailand 2022


Last year, Anchilee Scott-Kemmis, who was crowned Thailand’s Miss Universe 2021, brought about big changes to Thailand’s beauty pageant industry.

With her confidence and empowering social movement, #RealSizeBeauty, that challenges Thailand’s beauty standards, Anchilee does not only inspire women to embrace their own beauty, but also paved the way for different ideals of beauty in pageants.

Just a year later, we’re already seeing examples of diversity in pageants – here’s the story of the first woman with autism who qualified for Miss Thailand 2022

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Woman with autism makes Miss Thailand 2022 Top 50


On 9th January 2022, the story of Pornnapapun “Fern” Sungwarnthong, a woman with autism who qualified for Miss Thailand 2022, became talk of the town among Thai netizens after it was posted on Facebook page, กระทรวงนางงามแห่งประเทศไทย.

The post brought forth cheers from many Thai netizens, as this is the first time in Thailand’s beauty pageant history where a contestant with autism is participating.


Image credit: อีจัน

“As a representative of people with autism, I want to bring in a new and diverse standard, and use my voice to inspire others to follow their dreams,” said the contestant during her preliminary audition for Miss Thailand 2022.


Image credit: กระทรวงนางงามแห่งประเทศไทย

According to อีจัน, Fern also qualified for the Top 50 of Miss Thailand 2022.

With mental health history like this being made, let’s show our support by sending our congratulations to Fern for hitting the Top 50 stage.


Netizens send Fern encouragement & applaud organizers for embracing the diversity


After the story went viral on Facebook with – more than 42K likes – many netizens sent their encouragement to Fern and praised the organisers for embracing neurodiversity.


Screenshot: อีจัน

Translation: I’m so happy that a beauty pageant in Thailand is giving her a chance to audition for the contest. No more unrealistic beauty standards.

One netizen felt proud of Miss Thailand’s organisers for giving Fern an opportunity to join the contest.


Screenshot: อีจัน

Translation: It’s a once in a lifetime moment for her. Let’s support her. It’s the great part of her life. If she has potential, let’s give her a try. Let her follow her dream because everybody is equal. It’s ecstatic to support someone in doing what they love.

Another netizen encouraged others to give Fern support.


Screenshot: อีจัน

Translation: Excellent. It’s so nice for society to be more open to diversity and treat everyone equally.

One Facebook user applauded the organiser for treating her equally and embracing the diversity.


Express yourself, don’t repress yourself


The arrival of a contestant with autism onto Thailand’s beauty pageant industry is not only surprising, but also inspiring for those who are different and hope to pursue our own dreams.

Undoubtedly, Fern’s appearance will set fire to the passions that people have been waiting to pursue.

With this, we would like to encourage everyone to express themselves and to avoid letting people’s ideas and stereotypes determine their paths.


Cover images adapted from (L-R): กระทรวงนางงามแห่งประเทศไทย, อีจัน

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