Katie is a mother of six children, including a young daughter who has Down syndrome. She found herself searching the 'Back to School' mail-outs, catalogs and online marketing campaigns looking for pictures of kids with physical disabilities who use a walker or a wheelchair, or kids with intellectual disabilities, like her daughter. She found none. Not one model in close to 50 ads included one child with a disability. Not one. These children were just not represented. Katie thought, "I can’t figure out how kids like my own girl work 365 days to keep up with their peers yet they are still not valuable enough to be seen in advertising that is directly marketed at their peer groups."
Changing the Face of Beauty is making a difference. In just 3 short years, they have committed over 100 companies to include models with disabilities in their advertising. They helped put the first model with Down syndrome on the runway at New York Fashion Week, and they created 4 amazingly successful campaigns that reached around the world.
In 2014, Katie created a viral "Back to School" photo shoot that reminded the advertising community that children of all abilities are returning to school. She casted her own models, and reached out to some top children's clothing lines. You can see the awesome results of her shoot HERE.
This year, one of the companies who has committed to include models with visible differences in their advertising is Livie & Luca.
Incorporating people with disabilities in children's advertising and representing all people will change the fashion industry (and the world) for the better and will spread an incredible message about acceptance.
Positive representation matters!
13% of the children returning to school this year have a disability.
My son, Brennen is one of them.
We are proud to support companies that have made a commitment to include individuals with visible differences in their 2015 advertising.
Here is Brennen, rocking his new Livie & Luca 'Sherlock' grey wool booties. Perfect for the Fall, and ready for school!
Come on, friends! Make sure your little student is seen this back to school season by posting a picture on social media and using the hash tags:
#changingthefaceofbeauty and #imgoingbacktoschooltoo