This Photo Series Features Children With Down Syndrome Dressed as Disney Characters

Special needs teacher Nicole Perkins is trying to show why "the world is a much better place with people who have Down Syndrome in it."

nicole perkins' down with disney photo series
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Nicole Louise Perkins, 24, is a special needs teacher based in Birmingham, U.K. She's also a part-time photographer who is trying to show the world that children with Down Syndrome are a blessing. So, in 2018, she created a photo series called "Down Right Beautiful," which featured children of all ages with Down Syndrome, along with stories written by their parents about what it's like to have a child with Down Syndrome. Inspired by the success of the campaign, she created a new one this year called "Down With Disney," which featured even more babies and children with Down Syndrome, this time dressed as characters from Disney movies.

nicole perkins down with disney
Courtesy of Nicole Louis Photography

"According to some estimates, the abortion rate in the U.K. for families that find out their baby would have Down Syndrome is 90 percent, which I find heartbreaking," Perkins told Best Life. "I'm around children with Down Syndrome a lot of the time and, honestly, they make my life so much better."

nicole perkins' down with disney
Courtesy of Nicole Louis Photography

"Given that last year's project was so informative, I wanted to create something that was a bit more fun and more of a little celebration," Perkins said. "I'm a huge Disney fan, so I thought this would be perfect."

Nicole Perkins down with disney
Courtesy of Nicole Louis Photography

On Nov. 15, her photos were shared on the Love What Matters Facebook page, where they went viral, gaining over 52,000 likes and over 40,000 shares in just a few days.

nicole perkins down with disney
Courtesy of Nicole Louis Photography

People loved both the photos and the beautiful message behind them.

Nicole Perkins down with disney
Courtesy of Nicole Louis Photography

"This is truly amazing," one Facebook user wrote. "The joy in their faces. I hope Disney sees this and grants them all passes to visit and live these photos for real."

nicole perkins down with disney
Courtesy of Nicole Louis Photography

"So lovely," another Facebook user wrote. "The smiles are so genuine. I'm sitting here grinning from ear to ear."

down with disney nicole perkins
Courtesy of Nicole Louis Photography

Some even shared their own photos of their children with Down Syndrome enjoying the magic of Disney. Like this little lion who can't wait to be king.

Posted by Breanna Bartley on Friday, November 15, 2019

 

Or this precious Beauty and the Beast duo.

Posted by Hillary Lewis on Saturday, November 16, 2019

 

Perkins was thrilled that the series was so warmly received, especially here in America, where an estimated 67 percent of abortions are due to Down Syndrome diagnoses, according to The New York Times.

Courtesy of Nicole Louis Photography

"I hope my campaigns will show people there is so much more to people with Down Syndrome than what you read on the internet or are told in hospitals," Perkins said. "They are the best people you could ever meet and the world is a much better place with people who have Down Syndrome in it."

And for more on the magic of Disney and children with special needs, check out These Photos of Snow White Comforting a Little Boy With Autism Are Truly Magical.

Diana Bruk
Diana is a senior editor who writes about sex and relationships, modern dating trends, and health and wellness. Read more
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