Outlook Issue 27 Spring 2019
News and Views from St. Mary's Woodbridge
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It’s all about body confidence
This is an invitation to everyone to come to my fashion show – a fashion show with a difference – on Wednesday 24 April from 7.00 to 9.30 pm at St Peter's-on-the-Waterfront, Ipswich. It’s part of a project I am leading on behalf of Girlguiding Anglia's Action for Change, an initiative which enables young people to create a nine-month social action project for their local community. I am focusing on the topic of body confidence – or the lack of it – caused by social media and the constant pressure to take perfect ‘selfies’, which affects adults and children alike. I feel strongly about this issue, because of my own experience when growing up: I wore a tube-feed and was bullied throughout my school years. I’ve never seen anyone in the media who looks quite like me, and have never been confident in my appearance. Through Girlguiding, I’ve had the opportunity to attend ‘body confidence’ conferences and discuss why it’s so important to address the issue. I‘ve recorded a video with the BBC as part of this project, as well as creating a body-positive Instagram and a Facebook page. I would not have been brave enough to do any of this without the work I had previously done through Girlguiding. Fashion show with a difference I believe that the problem is partly because normal, real people are not adequately represented within the fashion industry. It is improving, but much more needs to be done. That’s why I am organising a fashion show with a difference. The models on the catwalk will all be people who don’t normally take part in fashion shows, and will be wearing clothes that they don't normally wear. We’ll be featuring models from a range of different backgrounds, ages, shapes, sizes and disabilities to demonstrate that we are the ones buying the clothes, and so we are the ones who should be represented by the mainstream media. A body-positive art gallery, created by a local artist, can be viewed in the interval, and the models themselves will share their stories about their personal body confidence journeys. I hope that this event will show that we all matter, that we all deserve a chance to be represented, that we all have a place in mainstream advertising. So come along and support us on 24 April! ENTRY FREE – EVERYBODY AND ANYBODY WELCOME! Jessica Shire Tel: 07929 042830 for further information Jess was a St Mary’s Guide and is now an Assistant Leader with 3rd Woodbridge (St Mary’s) Brownies. She has recently talked about her project on Radio Suffolk, and was featured in ‘Living in Woodbridge’ magazine. – Editor