Thursday, November 11, 2010

In Arizona, disAbled Divaz strut their stuff in accessible fashion

From KVOA-TV. Pictured is Wendy Wolf, a former Ms. Wheelchair Arizona and Divaz model in 2008.

TUCSON - Nov. 13 the "disABLED Divaz" will be strutting their stuff on the runway, showcasing their abilities in a fundraiser for the Aurora Foundation.

Jenny Goeckel and Shannon Franklin are preparing for this year's disABLED Divaz Fashion Show, featuring 23 models with disabilities.

"Just because we have some type of a disability doesn't mean that we don't have the same dreams as everybody else. So that's why it's important to me because I want people to see that," Goeckel said.

Jenny has Spinabifida, and says for women with diabilities, it can be hard to find clothes that fit.

In the event, designers will compete against each other and make fashions specifically for each model.

It was important that designers were all local, so that they could work with each of the women to design a look that would work for them and their lifestyle. And the best part: after the fashion show, each of the women get to take their look home.

"I am getting married early next year, so I needed something I could wear after my ceremony, because I can't sit in my wedding dress. So, the dress that was designed for me was something that I can change into after the wedding ceremony," Goeckel said.

She will be wearing a one-shoulder green dress, with gloves that allow her finds to be free to use her wheelchair.

"You can see that they feel beautiful, they have a new level of self esteem that they didn't have before, and that's really where the reward is," Franklin said.

They're hoping to raise money and also awareness, helping the public to see the woman and not lose her in the disability.

"It's trying to show off the wonderful aspects of their personality that have nothing to do with their disability," said Franklin.

Jenny is excited to wear the dress made specially for her. But more importantly, even with a disability, she will continue to reach for her dreams.