Fash­ion full cir­cle for re­tired model Fong

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Streetwatch - By DENISE S. CAHILL

WHEN Perth-raised model Kira Fong (42) came out of re­tire­ment for Ca­ble Beach Re­sort’s Fash­ion Fri­day on the eve of Broome Cup this month, she was sur­rounded by grad­u­ates from the Kim­ber­ley Girl pro­gram she es­tab­lished in 2004.

Model Ele­sha Mil­lar, make-up artist Mar­likka Per­dri­s­tat and hair stylist Kar­tika Eades all com­pleted the pro­gram that pro­motes per­sonal and pro­fes­sional de­vel­op­ment for young girls in Abo­rig­i­nal com­mu­ni­ties.

Ele­sha and fel­low Fash­ion Fri­day model Stephanie Heil are in Perth this week for a Perth Fash­ion Fes­ti­val cast­ing call.

“Each year we go out to com­mu­ni­ties and de­liver per­sonal and pro­fes­sional work­shops so they learn things like how to pay them­selves com­pli­ments and over­come ad­ver­sity,” Kira said.

“We’ve had 323 girls in the pro­gram since it started and in 2010 we ex­panded in to the Pil­bara. It’s re­ally sat­is­fy­ing watch­ing the girls grow.”

The red dirt is a far cry from cat­walks in Syd­ney, Hong Kong, Madrid and Europe where Kira worked af­ter be­ing dis­cov­ered by Western Sub­urbs Weekly fash­ion write Des Eddy at the age of 16.

“I moved to Syd­ney when I was 18 and was the first Asian model in WA to make it big over­seas,” she said.

“Asian mod­els weren’t in vogue at the time but I was very tall for any girl let alone an Asian model.”

At 30, Kira - mum to Jor­dan (10) - re­tired from mod­el­ling.

“I’d done what I needed to do,” she said.

The daugh­ter of a Chi­nese fa­ther and English-Scot­tish mother started a busi­ness in Perth be­fore re­turn­ing to her fam­ily in Broome where her grand­par­ents owned the gen­eral store in China Town.

“I came back up here and felt like I was home,” Kira said.

She started work­ing for Goolarri Media En­ter­prises when she es­tab­lished the Kim­ber­ley Girl pro­gram.

Kira Fong.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.