Browse all articles Down Syndrome in the Media By Kat Abianac / May 14, 2015 Recently, a photo hit social media running and is yet to slow down. With over 100,000 likes in 48 hours, Madeline Stuart model (with the help of her mum to run her Facebook page) has an amazing story to tell of health, fitness and weight loss. Madeline Stuart lives in Brisbane, Australia and has Down Syndrome. She struggled with her weight from a young age. She struggled with her weight from a young age. Early last year, with the help of her mother and her dance teacher, she decided to get fit and healthy. Her inspiration? Due to her weight, she couldn’t do cartwheels or handstands. Her goal was to change this. At the time, Madeline was more than 20kgs over her healthy weight range. She is nearly at her goal, and with a little encouragement is sure to make it! Maddy started swimming 4-5 days per week. She cut out all junk food, except for special occasions (and chips at the movies!) Along with a personal trainer, her fortnightly cricket for the Special Olympics (alternated with fortnightly cheerleading because she didn’t want to choose between the two!) the kilos started to melt away. Maddy loves all her activities during the week, as each one bring a new friendship circle with it and she is very social. Did I mention yet hip hop, a literacy program, and her special needs Drama group? She has represented her state 3 times in cricket, as well as state championships in swimming, gymnastics and basketball through the Special Olympics. She performed at the opening ceremony 2 years ago at the Asia Pacific games and is heading to LA to dance at the world games with her dance troupe later in the year. Maddy’s mum Rosanne says, “Madeline’s relationship with me is almost telekinetic. We have the most amazing bond, we just adore each other. She is my only child and it has been just her and I since she was born. I’m very social- she’s my mini me! Maddy is so confident, she has no hang ups. She is more than happy to parade around the house showing me how gorgeous she is with her hand up behind her head swaying her hips, as if to say, ‘Look at me!’ She is not insecure in the least, but I have made a point of never letting anyone be critical of her. I tell her every day how amazing, funny, smart, beautiful, wonderful she is!” “She does not care how she looks- she is not at all consumed with her looks. But she DOES care that she can run around all the time now feeling great. If the average person could only see the beauty Maddy has inside, how loving and caring she is! If that is what people measured beauty on, than most of the models in the world would have Down syndrome. It truly is a beautiful thing.” Would you like to see Madeline in print and media? Leave your comments and thoughts below! Follow her on Facebook or Twitter to follow her career.