Model With Down’s Syndrome ‘Paving the Way for Others With Disabilities’
A top model with Down’s Syndrome is blazing a trail for others with disabilities, her mother said.
Kate Grant, 20, from Cookstown in Co Tyrone, has become a brand ambassador for cosmetics giant Benefit.
She appeared on the firm’s Instagram account modelling a new eye-liner and has received nearly 5,000 likes.
Proud mum Deirdre Grant said:
"She is paving the way for people coming behind her.
"She is aware of that and wants to spread awareness about inclusion for people with disabilities and that is what she has done from the very start.
"She is aware that she is able to do that in a way some of her friends cannot. She is using her voice for them."
Kate was crowned champion in the Teen Ultimate Beauty Of The World pageant and also appeared on ITV show This Morning.
She has more recently become a brand ambassador for Benefit, which sells its make-up at over 2,000 shops in more than 30 countries globally.
Ms Grant added:
"She has a great drive to be a supermodel.
"I love her optimism and as her mum I would always be there to support her in that optimism.
"When you are young you think the sky is the limit and with Kate she does not have the understanding that we have that there are obstacles in the way.
"She does not allow obstacles to be in the way or her disability to stand in the way.
"She would say Down’s Syndrome does not define me - I am Kate."
An Instagram posting featuring the Co Tyrone model has attracted thousands of likes.
A recent post from the cosmetics company reads:
"WING WOMAN WEDNESDAY. Introducing our first #wingwomanwednesday the gorgeous @kategrantmodel."
"We’re so pleased to have her as one of our Wing Women."
Down’s Syndrome is caused by an extra chromosome in the cell and entails learning disability and potentially a range of other health problems.
Ms Grant added:
"Of course all of this wouldn’t have come to pass if Kate’s agent Cathy (Martin) hadn’t given Kate that chance to allow her dreams to come true, by modelling on the catwalk in Belfast Fashion Week.
"(She’s) a compassionate lady that took the time to care for another individual. This colossal act of kindness will be reciprocated by many blessings."
Social media users posted on Instagram after hearing the news.
"What an inspirational young lady, thank you @benefitcosmeticsuk for the heartwarming equal chances with your models! And for the amazing make up obviously."
"She is the prettiest and you are the coolest."