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Brazilian model with Down's syndrome breaks ground in fashion industry

La modelo brasilera con síndrome de Down que está conquistando al público de Australia Source: Facebook

Georgia Furlan, a 15-year-old Brazilian model with Down's syndrome, is signed to five modeling agencies and has more than 130,000 Instagram followers. She just made her first cover, on an Australian magazine.

"I'm happy with my work as I feel it is opening the doors for young people with Downs'syndrome," Georgia Furlan Traebert tells SBS Portuguese.

The Brazilian model is only 15-years-old and already an internet sensation with more than 130,000 followers on Instagram.

The teenager has made her first magazine cover for the Australian children's fashion magazine Katwalk Kids. She says she’s "over the moon".

"I never imagined a cover in Australia, what a dream! Now I want to make one in Brazil," she says.

Georgia Furlan
Georgia and her mother Rubia Furlan

Born in November 2003, Georgia was soon diagnosed with heart disease and Down's syndrome.

“We discovered she had Down's syndrome only after her birth,’ recalls her mother Rubia Furlan.

At only five months of age Georgia underwent cardiac surgery, and it was at that time Rubia decided to leave her job to take care of her daughter full-time. 

"Many people say bad things about Down's syndrome," says Rubia. "I do not see it that way... There are people who say a DS child is a huge toll on the parents, for us it was the opposite."

Today Georgia is happy, healthy and focused on her career, as well as things she loves doing on her spare time, such as skating, singing and acting.

Georgia Furlan

"Many followers on Facebook and Instagram say they have Georgia as their inspiration, and this is very rewarding. She kind of opened the door for girls with Down Syndrome who want to be models in Brazil," says Rubia.

The invitation to be the cover the Australian magazine Katwalk Kids happened unexpectedly.

"They got in touch with us, said they were following Georgia's work on Instagram and that they would love to have her on the front page," Rubia says.

The photos were taken in Brazil by photographer Eduardo Guilhon and sent to the magazine in Australia. Part of the magazine's subscription proceedings will go to the Katwalk For Kids Charity to help children with disability.  

“The aim of Katwalk Kids Fashion Magazine, founded in 2019, like Katwalk for Kids Charity is to promote inclusion and diversity within the children’s modeling industry, whilst also supporting the world’s most popular children’s models,” says Daniele Trask, the magazine’s founder and editor.

Georgia’s career, public image and social media presence are carefully managed by her mother.

Early this year, Georgia was also a finalist for the Global Social Media Awards in the Rising Star category, a competition based in the Czech Republic.

"Until then she was a 'Brazilian model with Down Syndrome' but from there she became more an inspiring model, with an increasing fan base around the world," says Rubia.

Georgia Furlan

Georgia says she loves her job.

"I love the camera. My secret to being a good model is to be happy, to be natural. I am very photogenic, I love taking photos."

In her free time, when not studying chemistry, her favourite subject at school, Georgia says she loves singing and acting.

"I want to be an actress, I'm doing theatre, I love singing, I love the stage," says Georgia.

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