Moving America Forward

This Mom Aims to Fix a Big Problem with Back-to-School Advertisements

August 14, 2014
This Mom Aims to Fix a Big Problem with Back-to-School Advertisements
Katie Driscoll wanted to see more children with disabilities in back to school ads and started a photo project. Kathryn Driscoll/5 boys and 1 girl make 6
Photographer Katie Driscoll hopes she can help make every child feel included.

As they say in the advertising world, “Image is everything.” If that’s the case, where does that leave the disabled?

Katie Driscoll, an Illinois mom and photographer, noticed something missing from back-to-school ads. Even though children of different races and gender were featured, there were never any children who look like her four-year-old daughter, Grace, who has Down syndrome.

That’s when Driscoll, the owner of 5 Boys + 1 Girl = 6 Photography, decided to start her own photo project to feature kids of all stripes, including those who are disabled.

As Driscoll told Buzzfeed, “How can we expect children to be accepting of children who are different if they are virtually [nonexistent] in the general media and advertising?”

MORE: This Grandmother Is Helping People with Down Syndrome Gain Confidence

“I put a casting call out and got together a group of children that I thought would represent all children returning to school,” Driscoll told ABC News. “Obviously, you can’t include every diagnosis but I wanted people to see differences because it’s important.”

She held a photoshoot in a Chicago bookstore, and said her models really enjoyed interacting with each other. You can check out their fun photo session in the video below.

Driscoll has also started the organization Changing the Face of Beauty, which encourages advertisers to feature those with disabilities in promotions. Based upon the number of people talking about her bookstore photo shoot, we fully expect Driscoll will find success in this venture as well.


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