Chelsea Werner from Danville, California, taught the world a big lesson. She raised the general awareness for people with Down Syndrome, showing the world that these people can have a successful career.
Chelsea became a gymnast at 4. She did gymnastics to strengthen her body. However, she was pretty god at it, and even won four Olympic championships.
The girl attracted the attention of We Speak, an international fashion agency, and they offered her a deal right away. Chelsea was recruited as a model, and her story encouraged other people with Down Syndrome to chase their dreams.
In her email for Aplus.com, Chelsea wrote, “I don’t think people with Down syndrome are represented enough. The more we are represented, the more people will see how capable we are.”
The girl won the Special Olympics US championships in gymnastics on four different occasion. Chelsea also won the Defending World Champion title twice.
“I’ve been doing gymnastics for as long as I can remember,” she said of her love for gymnastics. “I feel like it’s always been a part of my life, I think gymnastics has trained me to be disciplined and to work hard.
In gymnastics, each new skill takes a very long time – sometimes years! I think it has given me confidence.”
A lot of agencies rejected Chelsea and declined her applications. The modeling world didn’t want her in. But, her parents encourage to try even harder.
“I went to some modeling agencies that said there is no market for models with Down syndrome. My parents and I don’t give up. There is a market and I’m showing them!”
We Speak model scouts noticed the cute girl and they introduced her to the world of fashion.
CEO and founder of We Speak, Briauna Mariah, said she was impressed with Chelsea. She knew that the girl would become a star.
“I saw Chelsea’s potential to thrive in this industry and immediately reached out. It’s important that women feel represented in the industry. Chelsea takes feedback really well and is a quick learner.
Right now we’re building her experience in front of the camera, building her portfolio and brand. Soon I believe the industry will be just as captivated by Chelsea’s beauty as I am. I see her going far.”
Chelsea decided to make this bold move to show the world that she can be a model. She did even more than that. Today, a lot of people use her story as a motivation to build careers.
For Chelsea, modeling is nothing but a way to “show the world that we are all beautiful in our own way. All people have dreams and everyone needs to be given the opportunities to reach them! I hope that people see that I am not afraid to reach for my dreams even in the face of diversity.
My mission is hopefully to inspire others to be fearless and also to change some of the outdated misconceptions that exist when it comes to people with disabilities.”