How Taya, who was born with Down’s, became darling of the modelling world
DailyMail: The camera just loves little Taya Kennedy. Wide-eyed, cheeky, engaged; she brims with the confidence of a natural performer. It is little wonder that she has taken the child-modelling world by storm.
The fact that 14-month-old Taya also has Down’s Syndrome is quite incidental. She was selected, not to fulfil a quota, tick a box or adhere to the dictums of some politically-correct code of positive discrimination. Taya was picked because, quite simply, she is a star.
‘Taya is an incredibly photogenic, warm and smiley child, and that shines through in her photographs,’ says Alysia Lewis, owner of Urban Angels, the prestigious UK model agency that has signed her up. ‘We only open our books twice a year and select just a few new children each season. The standard is high; the desire for places strong. Taya is one of 50 children we chose from 2,000 applicants. That she has Down’s Syndrome did not enter the equation. We chose her because of her vibrancy and sense of fun. Not all children are comfortable in front of a lens and with a photographer looking at them — especially when they are so young. But Taya was so relaxed and happy. She was just what we were looking for.’
And Taya’s devoted mum, Gemma Andre, couldn’t be more proud. ‘I always believed my daughter was stunning but I thought, “I’m her mum. I’m biased,”’ she says. ‘When people say “poor you” I find it offensive and irritating,’ said Taya’s mother Gemma. ‘When the agency rang me and said, “We want her on our books. She’s absolutely beautiful”, I was delighted. I asked them if they were aware she had Down’s Syndrome. They said: “It’s immaterial. We’ve accepted her.” At that moment I burst into tears. I was overjoyed, not so much because Taya was going to be a model. More importantly, she had competed on equal terms with every other child and succeeded.
‘People can be really negative about children with Down’s. They say they can’t do this and won’t be able to achieve that. It’s incredibly frustrating. Someone said to me the other day: “I suppose she’ll never be able to live an independent life,” and I said, “Why on earth not?” ‘When people say “poor you” I find it offensive and irritating. The way I see it, some people cannot even have children and God has given me this special child.’
The story of Taya, her single-minded mum and proud father Robbie Kennedy is an uplifting one. Gemma, 29, a mortgage adviser with Santander, has never accepted that constraints must be imposed on her daughter because she has a disability. She refuses to countenance the negative and believes that her only child is capable of achieving any dream, however elevated.
Read the rest of the story here (and see more cute pics of Taya!).
Remember when proggies condemned Sarah Palin for giving birth to Trig? One writer in particular said “Trig was a financial burden who should have been aborted.” Would they say the same about this beautiful little girl Taya?
God has gifted Taya with a beautiful life!