THROUGH her already impressive community services efforts, Kiama's Melissa Tierney is a pretty confident young woman but she admits her latest challenge will test her.
Miss Tierney, 19, a student and disability support worker at the Disability Trust, is the first person to put up her hand for the 2014 Kiama Showgirl Competition.
Entries are now open for the 2014 competition, which is the first stage of The Land Sydney Royal Showgirl Competition.
Since the tender age of 15, Melissa -the 2011 Kiama Youth of the Year - has been an energetic and infectious fund-raiser.
Earlier this year Miss Tierney received the i98FM/ahm Local Hero of the Year Award for 2013 after her fourth annual Creative Performance Evening by Those With a Disability brought the fund-raising total for the Disability Trust to $45,000.
She has also raised funds for the Wollongong Hospital children's ward and Baby Angels and is currently organising an event for toddler Dexter Heffernan, who has cerebral palsy.
Miss Tierney said putting herself up for the Showgirl competition was a way for her to repay the community.
"The Kiama community has supported me so much," she said.
"They have always been behind me and this is one way for me to give back."
Miss Tierney, who has lived most of her life in Kiama, said she had a real fondness for and good memories of the Kiama Show.
"When I was little I used to enter my dog Hannah (a silky terrier) in the Pet Show."
While her Creative Performance Evening by Those With a Disability experience means Miss Tierney is confident in public, she said the Showgirl competition was something different.
"It's a whole new learning curve," she said.
"It does take you out of your comfort zone and I'm excited about it.
"The agricultural side of it is something I don't know much about.
"It's a competition but it's a variety of different things."
Showgirl entrants will visit farms to learn about Kiama's industries, play a special role at the Kiama Show Ball on January 10 and sash prize winners at the show on January 24-25. Prizes include beauty and fitness vouchers and a trip to Sydney.
Each entrant is judged according to The Land Sydney Royal Showgirl Competition criteria including personality, confidence, ambition and life goals, general knowledge, rural knowledge, presentation and speech.
Entrants must be aged 18 to 25 years as of May 1 next year.
For more information and entry forms, call 0404 494 921.