A teenager with vitiligo has managed to land his first ever major modelling job with Primark after allegedly getting turned down by Gap.
Kaiden Williams, 13, from Wolverhampton, was first diagnosed with the condition, which causes white patches to develop on the skin due to a lack of melanin, when he was four but decided to stop having treatment to prevent it as a seven-year-old.
He began doing bits of modelling here and there but was hit with disappointment when clothing competitor Gap allegedly turned him down.
After this though, he was spotted by a casting agency which led to his discovery by Primark, who offered him two modelling bookings.
His proud mum Dominique Williams now wants her son to inspire other young people to be proud of who they are no matter what they’re going through.
Dominique, 31, said: ‘Kaiden is a very humble boy. He doesn’t really know why everyone is making a big deal but I think he will when he’s older.
He doesn’t realise the impact he’s having. ‘I definitely believe he will inspire others through this – and make other children more confident.’
The 31-year-old, who works with children who have mental health issues, added: ‘He’s online on the Primark website and he’s on 10-foot posters at every Primark in England.
‘I’m so proud. I’m probably more excited than him. He doesn’t see it as a big thing and doesn’t really get it yet.
‘Kaiden is very naturally confident and has never really been bullied for his skin. He’s had the odd comment now and then, as I’m sure most children get, but never any real bullying.
‘He’s had the condition since he was four and it’s forever changing. But this past year it’s seemed a lot more steady. I think it might stay this way now.’
From the age of seven, up until last year Kaiden travelled with his mother to hospital three times a week to undergo UV therapy in a bid to treat his skin – until he decided he didn’t want to carry on.
Kaiden already has a few other modelling jobs in the pipeline, but when he’s not modelling, he’s out on the pitch playing football with Rushall Olympic three times a week, and also boxing once a week.