GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. - A little boy in Buford is about to become the next big modeling star.
Asher Nash's story recently went viral after his mom shared his photo along with her frustration about the lack of special needs children in the modeling industry.
Meagan Nash's 15-month-old son, Asher, is full of personality. He just lights up in front of the camera, so a few months back, the family started submitting his photos to local casting calls for modeling. They were upset to find out though that the photos weren't being forwarded to the companies, because Asher has Down Syndrome.
Asher Nash is just like any 15-month-old; he loves to talk, blow kisses and dance.
"I know that babies love the attention, but I'm telling you, it's something about Asher that when he gets in front of people and gets in front of the camera, it's like he just knows he's supposed to put on a show," explains Meagan.
So, Meagan began routinely sending in Asher's photo for open casting calls. For a while, she heard nothing back, then she was blown away by the response she finally got.
"I actually was told they did get them, but they weren't submitting his pictures because they did not specify that they were looking for a baby with special needs. So my first question was, 'Did they specify that they were not looking for a baby with special needs?'" recalls Meagan.
Meagan was hurt, so she turned to Facebook and the organization Changing the Face of Beauty.
"Through their organization, they encourage families to call out these brands that aren't working with people with disabilities yet. So I called out Osh Kosh. I used Osh Kosh because they're local to us, but Asher also loves wearing their clothes," Meagan says.
Her post went viral, garnering more than 124,000 shares and many kind comments.
"I know that all parents are biased and believe their children are beautiful, but the fact that the world took to his pictures like the way that we look at him, is so amazing," she adds.
Also amazing, was the response from Osh Kosh and Carter's. Inc., who wanted to meet Asher immediately and invited him to be a part of their upcoming spring and summer photo shoots.
"It was incredible. I mean, they welcomed us with open arms. Then we got a call and they actually invited him in to shoot for their holiday ad this year. So, we are confirmed, November 8, Asher will be shooting with Osh Kosh," Meagan says with Asher.
For Meagan and Asher, it's a small victory in a much bigger fight to show that children with special needs should be included and that Down Syndrome does not define who this sweet boy is.
"It was not about Asher getting into modeling and being in that advertisement, it was just about making that change so that the world sees more people with disabilities in the advertisement," Meagan says.
The family is making a difference. Since making headlines, Asher has already done work on photo shoots for "Kids II," a company with several children's brands.
"This has opened a lot of doors. We've been contacted by several other companies, who are ecstatic.They can't wait to work with him, so I just feel so proud as his mom because everyone else saw that story and now they're trying to make the change and they're thinking, 'well this is something that we want to be a part of.'"
The next step for Asher will be getting an agent, because the calls keep pouring in. So keep an eye out for Asher, and his mother will be keeping everyone updated on his journey on the Facebook page, "Asher's Down Right Perfect."