Francesca Rausi is age four and has Down’s syndrome. She is also rapidly becoming a catwalk fashion supermodel. She confidently strutted her stuff, smiling the entire time, at a fashion show for disabled models in Malta.
Also modeling at the event was Madeline Stuart, age 23, the world’s first fashion model with Down’s syndrome. She has been challenging society’s perception of what it means to be beautiful ever since she took up modeling as a career.
Francesca’s mother, Michelle, wants Francesca to do the same and hopes her modeling career will increase awareness of Down’s syndrome in addition to continuing to challenge and change ideas about what it means to be beautiful.
Michelle says Francesca has been modeling since she was a toddler, when she managed to win a competition in Malta and was named “top junior model” as reported here in The Daily Mail.
Since then, she has appeared more than five times on the catwalk at fashion shows and has become very comfortable with her role. She owns the catwalk as she confidently strides along, smiling away.
She is planning to compete in Malta’s Junior Miss Christmas soon. Her mother stated “I feel very emotional watching her because I see the happiness in her eyes. It’s out of this world.”
Her most recent appearance was in a disabled model fashion show in Malta that was organized by Tiziana Randisi in an effort to promote inclusion of these women in the world of fashion.
The latest show included 22 models with various disabilities, aged four through 24. Her goal is to change the minds of people who think of a disability as a limit; she wants to show that these models are not limited at all.
This heartwarming story of a plucky little girl not afraid to pursue her dreams deserves to be spread far and wide.