Madeline Stuart will walk the runway at New York Fashion Week

By Kate Hassett

Madeline Stuart will walk the runway at New York Fashion Week
Inspirational model is determined to not let Down Syndrome define her.

We were first introduced to the inspirational Madeline Stuart earlier this year, when she began making headlines for addressing the need for inclusionary policies in the fashion world.

The aspiring model, from Brisbane Australia, has been working towards challenging disability stereotypes “on runways and beyond.”

At just 18, Stuart’s road is one less traveled in the fashion world. As a model with Down Syndrome, Madeline has faced a lifetime of stigma, misconceptions and prejudice, especially when she decided to pursue a career in the fashion industry.

Now, her dreams will come true as she graces the runways of New York Fashion Week later this year. Walking for FTL Moda, in partnership with the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation, Madeline will take centre stage to bring awareness to the chromosomal disorder that affects one in every 700 babies.

“I hope through modelling I can change [society’s] view of people with Disabilities, exposure is creating awareness, acceptance and inclusion,” Stuart writes on her Facebook page.

“The world was ready,” Stuart’s mother told Cosmopolitan this week. “The world wants to be inclusive, it just hasn’t had anyone on such a platform that they were able to do it easily.” Stuart is hoping that her message will spread to the masses, creating an honest and open forum about disability that will transform the fashion world and all those who reside within it.

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