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Budding actress from Truro says talent is more important than looks

By WBMiles  |  Posted: March 06, 2014

Maddie Wilshire from Truro College wants people to judge performers on their talent rather than on their looks.

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A young budding actress from Truro is campaigning to ensure an individual’s talent is rated higher than their looks.

Maddie Wilshire, 17, is concerned that budding performers feel pressurised to look a certain way.

In response Maddie has created a poster campaign celebrating diversity.

She is working with the national charity Fixers, which supports young people aged 16-25 to tackle any issue that matters to them, however they choose.

Maddie said: “I want to go into acting in the future and I find it wrong that so many people lose out on opportunities because they’re not beautiful by media standards.

“It upsets me to see young people hate the way they look.

“Because they're surrounded by edited photos of celebrities looking slim and perfect, they are pressured into conforming.”

Maddie said the issue was particularly prevalent in the performing arts.

“This means that many young people change their lifestyle to lose weight and to change who they are,” she said.

Maddie’s poster campaign seeks to challenge beauty stereotypes by highlighting that individuality is more interesting than everyone looking the same.

She said: “‘I want the posters to target everyone and to raise awareness of the unfair portrayal of body image in the media.

“The promotion of a ‘perfect’ appearance encourages young people to think that looks are everything when, in reality, they are not and should not be.

“What I want to do through my campaign is change how young people think about themselves and how the media presents beauty.

“Hopefully it will be a step towards creating greater diversity when it comes to body image.”

Fixers, which was established in 2008, has supported more than 11,000 young people across the UK to have a voice in their community.

Young people have campaigned on issues with Fixers as diverse as cyber-bullying, self-harm, suicide and the need for more random acts of kindness.

Fixers aims to work with more than 70,000 young people by 2020 to help them to take action and tackle the issues they feel strongly about.

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