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Valentina the Model
Valentina the Model

This story is about my daughter, Valentina Guerrero, who has Down syndrome. She was born on September 16, 2011 and we found out about her condition that day. Interestingly enough we had picked her name years ago, which means brave warrior in Spanish. Although the first few weeks were incredibly hard because we were quite ignorant about Down syndrome, with her innate wisdom and pure love, Valentina opened our eyes and showed us the infinite benefits of this magical world and how lucky we truly are! We realized that in this path of life we will face some challenges - but what family doesn’t? - however the rewards that someone with Down syndrome brings are far more important and fulfilling! 

We decided to make it our life’s mission to change the perception of Down syndrome shining a light on the wonderful experiences and lessons that people with Down syndrome bring to life's journeys. A few weeks after we set this goal for ourselves, we got a call from a top fashion executive asking if Valentina would be interested in modeling! At 9 months old, she became the first child with Down syndrome to be the main model for the prestigious fashion brand, Dolores Cortés USA. Dolores Cortés is a respected European swimwear designer and this summer is in charge of designing the outfits for the Spanish synchronized swimming team for the 2012 London Olympics. As her U.S. model, Valentina will appear on the cover of DC KIDS 2013 (children’s collection) catalogues and brochures which will be sent to clients, distributors and specialized media. Furthermore, over 500 guests will receive these materials at Mercedez Benz Fashion Week in Miami Beach on July 20, 2012, and thousands of individuals that attend this famous event will be greeted by posters with her signature smile! 

Not only does this show that people with Down syndrome are just as beautiful and capable of anything they set their minds to, but it also carries a clear message of inclusion. Every child deserves the same opportunities regardless of their physical, economic, social, racial or medical condition. Valentina hasn’t even turned one, and is already working to change society’s values by opening our minds to a wider definition of beauty, and celebrating that we are all different, and that’s what makes us unique!

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Comments (1,000 character limit)

liz, United States, MA
5/14/2014 2:02:13 PM
Valentina's beauty radiates and has touched so many lives. She is adorable, photogenic, and I hope she keeps widening people's understanding of beauty.

Marc Boehden, Germany,
10/30/2012 5:48:06 PM
What a beautiful Girl, what a lovely story ! I wish you so much strength and energy for your life and your projects... Many greetings from Berlin, Germany

Jossette, Ecuador,
10/25/2012 12:44:33 PM
Dios nos creo a imagen y semejanza de El (o ella) verdad? Tan simple como eso...Valentina eres una Diooosa. Desde Ecuador un agradecimiento a sus papis por demostranos tolerancia, respeto, amor. Dios está siempre con ustedes ahí "24 seven".

Joe Capo, United States, FL
10/24/2012 1:15:07 PM
Agree DS childen have the most beautiful SMILES & give the best HUGS in the world. Valentina is a "BEAUTIFUL CHILD" with a purpose in Life who carries a message to all humanity, We are all special in god's eyes. Im so Glad I crossed path with her Mom and Family, (we haven't met yet,) because I also was Blessed with my 17-yr old niece, Natalie Capo with Down syndrome and she is my LIFE..... Thaks to the parents for their dedication and advocacy for the Down syndrome. God Bless Valentina and her family's Heart.

Dientes Blancos, United States, OK
10/3/2012 3:53:32 AM
That is my daughter's name too... Im not going to get into her story, but I hope God is fair to all his children in the end.

Denise Massey , United States, CA
9/14/2012 10:18:07 AM
What a cutie!

Alexandra Madrigal, United States, CA
08/16/2012 21:42:46
:) Hermosa Historia

Alexandra Madrigal, United States, CA
08/15/2012 22:20:25
Beautiful story of Valentina.

Alexandra Madrigal, United States, CA
08/15/2012 22:16:15
Beautiful story of Valentina :)

Fiona McNeill, United States, CT
07/27/2012 09:34:10
congratulations to a pair of valiant parents!

Rosi Gilman, Ecuador,
07/15/2012 03:50:30
Tuve una muy querida amiga, Sonia, cuya sonrisa era tan bella y la llamabamos "Sonrisal" Ella fallecio de cancer en el 2005, y su sonrisa se quedo en mi corazon. Extranio su vivida y alegre sonrisa,..hasta que me llego la foto de la preciosa Valentina, y nuevamente, la sonrisa de alguien muy especial, impacto mi corazon. Gracias Valentina!!!! Como iluminas, hermoso Angelito!

Narcisa, United States, NY
07/14/2012 16:24:26
Valentina is blessed to have parents like you!!!. I have been working with parents who have children with DS. They don't accept that their children are blessings to their lives. They feel so guilty which impede the children to grow and be the angels sent by God to their lives. Romanos 8:28 “Sabemos, además, que a los que aman a Dios, todas las cosas los ayudan a bien, esto es, a los que conforme a su propósito son llamados." Romans 8:28 "And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose."

Gabriela, Ecuador,
07/13/2012 11:55:21
We can all learn something from this little warrior!!

Deborah Faidutti, Ecuador, NJ
07/12/2012 16:49:04
Valentina is adorable! A bright light.

Esteban Fernández, Ecuador,
07/12/2012 12:57:59
great story

Daniela Reyes, Ecuador,
07/12/2012 10:57:19
Felicitaciones Valentina y que sigas inpirando al mundo!!

David Diaz, France,
07/12/2012 09:40:00
Wonderful, uplifting.

Alexa Diaz, United States, FL
07/12/2012 09:14:48
LOVE HERRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!! She lightens the world with her smile!

Monica Hillman, United States, SC
07/12/2012 01:06:52
Que increíble Como se dio todo, le doy la Gloria a Dios por haberme Usado de la manera mas impresionante , y ser parte de esta transformación junto con Ceciliz, Juan Fernando y VALENTINA , Sacarla en nuestro catalogo,estamos orgullosos de que sea parte de nuestra historia en DC Kids en USA.

Sebastian, Ecuador,
07/11/2012 22:31:59
She is the best!

Anly Calderon, United States, FL
07/11/2012 18:25:53
Sin palabras!!! Una Historia Muy Linda y Una Princesita Increible...

Viviana Wiewall, United States, FL
07/11/2012 17:43:50

Daniela Jácome, Ecuador,
07/11/2012 14:34:11
It is a truly inspiring story! Congratulations Valentina!

Adriana Real, Ecuador,
07/11/2012 13:37:35
Felicitaciones ceci!!! cuenta con mi apoyo siempre.

Luciane Araujo, Brazil,
07/11/2012 12:56:01
Que linda Ceci!!!

Daniela Haro, Ecuador,
07/11/2012 11:46:57
Hermosa Valentina me encanto a penas la vi!

Herrera, United States, FL
07/11/2012 11:44:38
Valentina hermosa!!!!!!!

Claudia Andrade, France,
07/11/2012 11:36:28

monica rivero de la fuente, Mexico,
07/11/2012 11:35:40
Es una historia única, que debe ser conocida en todas partes para lograr un cambio radical en todas las personas, incluidas las que tienen otro tipo de dicapacidad. pero sobre todo los que convivimos con ellos.

Beth Morey, United States, PA
07/11/2012 11:22:53
Good Luck!!

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