NEW YORK – Meet Paris Hilton, grown-up.
The 26-year-old socialite has vowed to change her party-girl image after serving a 23-day jail sentence in June for violating probation in an alcohol-related reckless driving case.
"There are a lot of bad people in L.A. Before, my life was about having fun, going to parties -- it was a fantasy," she tells Newsweek magazine in its Oct. 22 issue, now on newsstands. "But when I had time to reflect, I felt empty inside. I want to leave a mark on the world."
Hilton says she is now committed to using her celebrity status for the greater good. Next month, she plans to pack her bags for Rwanda to bring attention to the African country.
"I'm scared, yeah. I've heard it's really dangerous," she says. "I've never been on a trip like this before."
Hilton, accompanied by a children's charity called Playing for Good, will visit schools and health-care clinics as part of a five-day charity mission. The trip will be filmed -- not surprising, given Hilton's love of the camera.
"I love having everything documented," says Hilton, who hopes to turn the footage into a film. "It shows people what everyday life is like for me, how hard I work. There are a lot of misconceptions about me."
Hilton says her dating life isn't as wild as the tabloids make it out to be.
"I've been linked to so many guys, but there's nothing romantic going on at all," she says. "I get along better with guys than girls. I trust them more. They don't get all girly and mean. Girls have drama."