Social Issues

Mexico stages fashion show to provide visibility for people with disabilities

Mexico City, Oct 26 (EFE).- With the aim of providing visibility to people with disabilities and creating options for equality and social inclusion, Wednesday saw the second edition in Mexico of the All Inclusive Runway fashion show with the participation of designers and models with disabilities.

“All Inclusive arises from the need to give visibility to people with disabilities and thus create perceptions of equality and so that they enjoy social inclusion in equal circumstances like any other person,” Silke Lubzik, the president and founder of Cambiando Modelos (Changing Models), told EFE.

Organized by the Cambiando Modelos and Kadima foundations, the event is being held in acknowledgement of and respect for diversity and to collect funds to promote the inclusion in society of people with disabilities.

At the second edition of the fashion show, 24 models – 14 of them with disabilities – paraded along the catwalk modeling the creations of three internationally recognized fashion designers.

“We have three haute couture Mexican designers: Iann Dey, Sereno del Sordo and Armando Takeda. And we have 24 models with and without disabilities who are going to be displaying those very beautiful garments,” Lubzik said.

For the models, the event is an important opportunity to show that inclusion and diversity can be pursued everywhere, even in the fashion world.

“When I learned about this inclusive (show), to provide visibility to people with disabilities, in the communications media, I said ‘Wow! How great, and absolutely!’ So, this message of inclusion is really great and I think that it’s very necessary at this time,” said Uriel Osorio, who suffers from a visual disability.

He said that this fashion show required hours of mental preparation to be one of the models because he knew that he would have be attentive to sounds and to handle his walking stick properly.

“We prepared ourselves with modeling classes, which they gave us here,” he said.

“They were modeling classes, how to stop, how to walk, how to pose, how to get the hang of it all, and the truth is that yes, right now I feel calm, but I’m nervous about getting up there (on the catwalk),” he said.

German de la Rosa, a sound engineer who had to have his right leg amputated, said he participated in the event to show that people with disabilities are no different from anyone else.

“(Showing) that we’re not strange, that we’re not people who need special treatment, that we’re not limited in doing something we like, that we’re like all other people in being able to express with our bodies what we’re like as human beings” is what it’s all about, he said.

De la Rosa, who is also a cancer survivor, said that the fashion show also serves to allow him to transmit his life experiences and his inner beauty.

“Everyone is worried about being viewed well from the outside, but with this experience of doing the rehearsals, being with many people who have human worth, I see that beauty is completely internal and one can allow it to shine out from within,” he said.

Both models said that Mexico still remains a country that must work toward ensuring greater social inclusion for people with disabilities.

“I feel that we’re still light years from really being a completely inclusive country that really includes people with disabilities or with any kind of different characteristics,” Osorio said.

Nevertheless, they said that events like this can raise the awareness of society.

It shows “that (in) fashion anyone can be a model, any of us can participate,” De la Rosa said.

EFE csr/ppc/enb/bp

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