Fashion Show Helps Austin Teens Battling Illnesses Feel Fabulous
It was a night of hair, makeup, and the works for a group of Austin teens, who took to the runway to show off the latest trends in fashion. Our Stef Manisero shows us why now, more than ever, a little glamour is exactly what these kids need.
AUSTIN, Texas -- On Sunday, a special group of Austin teens got a taste of the glamorous life.
The support group offers a place for teens battling cancer and blood disorders to meet others going through similar diagnoses.
Sunday's fashion show was a night for these kids to forget about being sick, and instead feel confident.
"First time, feeling like a model," said 17-year-old Sergio Garcia.
"It's so much fun to get pampered," added Cami Eagle.
It was a night to feel fabulous, when the reality sometimes isn't.
"I was diagnosed when I was 15 years old," Sergio said. "It was a hard time in school, not being able to go."
Sergio learned he had leukemia when he was a high school freshman.
For 15-year-old Cami, the fight's been forever.
"When I was 10 months old I was diagnosed with Congenital Dyserythropoietic Anemia Type 1 -- it's a mouthful," Cami said. "I have a lot of pain and fatigue. I pass out a lot."
"They want to feel their best, they want to feel beautiful, and when you don't feel well, you just don't," said Aysa Province, a volunteer at the Children's Blood & Cancer Clinic.
On Sunday it was all about feeling beautiful.
Surrounded by friends and family, Sergio and Cami were empowered to strut their stuff down the runway.
"A lot of people look straight down, and you've got to keep reminding yourself look up," Cami said.
The fashion show was hosted by the Children's Blood and Cancer Clinic's Hungry Bunch, a support group that helps with the isolation disease brings.
"But when I'm around other people like me and doing fun things like this, I forget about it and I just have fun," said Cami.
While a new outfit never hurts, and neither does being pampered, nothing tops the confidence and reinforcement that a night in the spotlight can bring.
"They were like, 'You should try this on,' so I did, and I was like, 'I look great,'" Sergio said while smiling.
"They make you feel so beautiful," Cami added.
"In an event like this, they have the community's support, and I think that's so important for them to realize that we're all behind them and we all care and we all love them," Province said.
Four local boutiques let the kids borrow their outfits for the evening.
Stylists from Wild Orchid Salon did hair, while a number of local artists did makeup.