A church in New York City recently hosted a fashion show for kids with special needs. Over 250 people attended the event at St. Malachy’s Church on the West Side of Manhattan, with proceeds going to the Special Needs Activity Center for Kids and Adults.
Forty models with various special needs, including Down syndrome, participated in the event. Five fashion designers donated clothing for the event, and Miss America 2008 hosted. The models walked the runway to a unique soundtrack: the singing of a live choir, which provided a relaxing atmosphere for the participants, many of whom have noise sensitivities.
The positive response to the event has encouraged the hosts to form a nonprofit foundation and hold more of these events across the country. Their goal is to raise awareness for local special needs organizations, as well as the need for adaptive clothing options.
Host Sean O’Hare said:
The plan is to host these fashion shows in cities all over the country and the world under a new non-profit called 100 Million Strong (for the 100 Million worldwide who are disabled). Each time we will spotlight a local special needs charity and a few of the models and their families as they prepare for the big show. We are hoping we will find many corporate sponsors from fashion world and other industries as well.
The next event will be held in Soho on April 14.