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Demi Lovato still aspires to inspire her young fans

She’s come a long way from her Disney days, but former “Sonny With a Chance” star Demi Lovato knows that she still wants to be a positive role model for young girls. In an interview posted Wednesday with Cosmopolitan for Latinas, the singer-songwriter and actress revealed that she didn’t have a positive role model to look up to when she was growing up.

BURBANK, CA - APRIL 14: Clear Channel presents an exclusive performance with Demi Lovato as part of the iHeartRadio Live series at the iHeartRadio Theater on April 14, 2014 in Burbank, California
Photo by Kevin Winter

“When I was younger, I needed someone in the spotlight to idolize, who stood for positivity and light and happiness, and wanted to change the world,” she said. “And because I didn’t have that, I realized I want to do that, if only for my 12-year-old little sister.”

The former Disney Channel star and “X Factor” judge has made headlines for her rehab stint and her battles with both bulimia and bipolar disorder, but she now says she keeps things in check with daily medication and a hefty dose of gratitude for the good things in her life. She also credits being honest about her past for helping her to keep on the right path.

The 21-year-old superstar also said that while she’s happy with how her career has played out so far, she still has some major goals to conquer. “I’m very proud of how far I’ve come, but I definitely want to win a Grammy one day, and I dream of winning an Oscar,” she said. “I want to continue to tour and build my fan base and make music that will last for decades.”

Her recent magazine interview (in which she was named Fun Fearless Latina of the Year, by the way) isn’t the first time Lovato has talked about being a role model. In a 2012 interview with “Good Morning America,” the singer revealed the reason why she decided to talk openly about her eating disorder and depression.

“That’s what being a role model is about,” she said at the time. “It’s not about being perfect. It’s about speaking about your issues and inspiring others to get help.”

Fresh on the heels of the U.S leg of her “Neon Lights” concert tour to promote her fourth album Demi, Lovato was a big winner at last week’s the Radio Disney Music Awards in Los Angeles. According to Billboard, the “Skyscraper” singer took home the coveted Best Female Artist Award. The singer’s relationship with Disney also played a part in the choice to have her record the single version of the hit “Frozen” soundtrack song, “Let It Go.”

Lovato is currently touring in Brazil and will finish off the final leg of her tour in London next month.