Schoolgirl appears in second calendar to help change views of Down's syndrome

Bethany posed for photographs at Pennington Flash. Pictures: Future Memories Photography By Jaynie
Bethany posed for photographs at Pennington Flash. Pictures: Future Memories Photography By Jaynie

A schoolgirl helping to change perceptions will spend a month in homes around the country next year as she appears in a 2020 calendar.

Bethany Parr was one of the youngsters chosen to star in the annual item by Wouldn’t Change A Thing, a parent-led campaign to show the positive sides of Down’s syndrome.

Bethany posed for photographs at Pennington Flash. Pictures: Future Memories Photography By Jaynie

Bethany posed for photographs at Pennington Flash. Pictures: Future Memories Photography By Jaynie

The six-year-old, who has the genetic disorder, certainly has luck on her side as it is the second time she has appeared in the campaign’s calendar - each time selected by a random number generator!

Her mum Beverley, who lives in Leigh, said: “It’s fabulous. They are doing such a good job of raising awareness and changing the negative perceptions of Down’s syndrome.

“Beth is seven in February and in those seven years I have noticed a massive shift in people’s approach to us.”

She said people previously moved their children away from Bethany so they could not play with her, but now they will start conversations, asking about her and Down’s syndrome.

She believes the campaign is making a real difference and welcomes the calendars, which she says shows what children with Down’s syndrome are actually like.

So Mrs Parr is delighted that Bethany was selected to appear for the second year.

She said: “When she was chosen again, I said yes, because she is going to be sitting in someone’s office, work place, in their living room for a month as a reminder.”

Bethany, a pupil at Rowan Tree Primary School in Atherton, posed for a selection of pictures at Pennington Flash, which were taken by local photographer Jaynie Acton.

She will appear on the page of the calendar for November.

Bethany is one of a number of youngsters appearing in the calendar, which will raise awareness and funds for the campaign trying to change perceptions of people with Down’s syndrome.

Wouldn’t Change A Thing started last year with a viral video named 50 Mum, 50 Kids, 1 Extra Chromosome, which has since had more than 500m views worldwide.

Mrs Parr is a keen supporter of the campaign, with Bethany previously appearing in a music video and online Advent calendar, as well as the two annual calendars.

To order the 2020 calendar, go to www.wouldntchangeathing.org.