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Woman Mocked For Her Dry ‘Scaly’ Skin Condition Defies Bullies by Winning Beauty Pageants.

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Thirty year old Bailey Pretak from Wilcox in Pennsylvania, was born with lamellar ichthyosis, a genetic disorder that means her skin constantly cracks and sheds. The amazing performer cruelly mocked for her dry ‘scaly’ skin condition is defying bullies by winning beauty pageants. Bailey revealed that if she doesn’t exfoliate and moisturise her face, hands and feet on a daily basis her skin will crack and leave her in pain.

At school, she was called ‘scaly Bailey’ and children who feared she was ‘contagious’ stopped playing with the same toys as her. She was excluded from a lot of activities growing up and only began to ‘come out of her shell’ thanks to acting, singing and dancing. Bailey started entering beauty pageants two years ago, and has since won the titles of Miss Pennsylvania, Ultimate Queen and Miss Congeniality-an award voted by fellow competitors.

She’s now travelling around the US, using her performances as a platform to educate others about ichthyosis and raise money to help further research for a cure. Bailey, a bank teller, said, “As a child I felt very excluded and left out, I wasn’t always included as people were afraid of my skin. In kindergarten, parents wanted kids moved of out my class or not to touch the toys I played with because they thought I was contagious and there was a stigma similar to leprosy.

I’ve overheard people calling me ‘scaly Bailey’ and other kinds of comments like that I’ve been sunburned. Because of my experiences growing up, I never thought a person with ichthyosis could be a beauty queen, you get stereotypes in your mind about what one looks like.

I tried it and in my first year, I was Miss Pennsylvania at Pure International Pageants and a year later I was awarded a title for my volunteering, also I won Miss Congeniality. “I went from being the shy, insecure girl to being on stage modelling, it’s amazing how far I’ve come. The arts are a huge thing for me, they brought me out of my shell.

On stage people see the characters I perform, the music I sing or dance to and don’t judge me by my skin. I’m using my performances to educate others, the more people who understand the condition, the less they fear it. I find it so fulfilling to do, I take the hardships from my own life and see them as a blessing to share with other families.”

Bailey added, “I shower and lotion my full body once a day to break down the scaling, If I forget to lotion one of my arms or the bottom half of my legs, I know I will regret it a few hours into the day when my skin starts to tighten and cracks.

Summer is easier for me as it’s so humid and my skin looks better, but in winter my hands and feet crack all the time sometimes a quarter of an inch deep. Because the skin on my hands and feet crack, it can be especially hard to walk and dance with this condition. But I’ve learned to deal with the pain the best I can and work through it.”

While growing up Bailey suffered nasty comments due to strangers’ misconceptions about the appearance of her skin. Bailey said, “At times, I have felt very alone and like an outcast, but I’ve never given up.” To combat her insecurities Bailey found her confidence through performance classes and now she’s an avid actress.

source:DAILYMAIL

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Female Chief Rises To Power, Annuls 850 Child Marriages And Sends Girls Back To School

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Theresa Kachindamoto, senior chief in the Dedza District in Central Malawi, is certainly a force to reckon with. She has not only been able to establish a new law to prevent child marriage, she is also very dedicated to enforcing it!

From the moment Kachindamoto became senior chief, she immediately set about ending the practise of child marriage among her people.

Though illegal, the practice has been culturally accepted in the area. Many families, usually out of financial need, had consented to having their children married off very young.

Theresa Kachindamoto, senior chief in the Dedza District in Central Malawi

Theresa Kachindamoto, senior chief in the Dedza District in Central Malawi

According to Al Jazeera, Kachindamoto decided to take a stand and made 50 of her sub-chiefs sign an agreement to end child marriage in her area of authority. “I told them, ‘Whether you like it or not, I want these marriages to be terminated.’” She said.

But that was not all, Kachindamoto made the leaders annul any existing underage unions, and send all of the children involved back to school and swore to dismiss any chiefs that continue to allow these controversial practices. “First it was difficult, but now people are understanding,” she told Al Jazeera.

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To ensure all children have a chance to go to school, Kachindamoto operates a secret network of parents to keep an eye on others. And when parents can’t afford to pay school fees, she’ll pay them herself or find someone else who can.

“I don’t want child marriages. They must go to school. No child should be found at home or doing household chores during school time.” Chief Kachindamoto told U.N. Women.

In June alone, she annulled more than 300 child marriages, according to the organization. And over the past three years, the figure reaches close to 850.

She also abolished “kusasa fumbi”, a cleansing ritual that requires girls as young as seven to go to sexual initiation camps in order to train them to perform sex acts to please their future husbands.

Kachindamoto made the leaders annul any existing underage unions, and send all of the children involved back to school

Kachindamoto made the leaders annul any existing underage unions, and send all of the children involved back to school

Kachindamoto received death threats for her work, but simply said: “I don’t care, I don’t mind. I’ve said whatever, we can talk, but these girls will go back to school.”

Malawi has one of the highest rates of child marriage in the world, with an alarming one in two girls married under age 18. Marrying underage negatively affects girls’ development, interrupting their education and putting them at higher risk of domestic violence and early pregnancy.

“I talk to the parents, I tell them: if you educate your girls you will have everything in the future.” she said to U.N. Women last year.

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Ohio Teen Unrecognizable After Losing 115 Pounds While Walking To School Every Day

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Ohio Teen Unrecognizable After Losing 115 Pounds While Walking To School Every Day

Two years ago, weighing in at 335 pounds, Michael Watson was overweight and in a rut with no self confidence. He was always bullied at school because of his weight and always had his mates make fun of him.

One day, the 6-foot-4 inch teen decided to make a change in his life and never looked back again. As it turned out, it was the best decision of his life. “My self-confidence was zero,” Watson told CNN.

The teen decided to make a commitment to walk to and from school every day, about 20 minutes each way. Apart from that, Michael also made some changes in his diet.

Michael Watson was overweight and in a rut with no self confidence. He was always bullied at school because of his weight and always had his mates make fun of him.

Michael Watson was overweight and in a rut with no self confidence. He was always bullied at school because of his weight and always had his mates make fun of him.

One time, a classmate told Michael he had something on his chin. When Watson rubbed his chin, the boy told him, “‘No, third one down. That really hurt.” Michael said.

But it was instances like that that fueled his desire to stay committed to his weight loss journey even more.

Now Michael is a senior at McKinley High School and has lost 115 pounds. He says much of his success was as a result of walking the 20 minutes to and from school every day, rain or shine.

Read also: 10-Year-Old Boy Commits Suicide After Being Bullied Over Colostomy Bag

Even if Watson wanted to take a day off, he couldn’t. “I didn’t even know when the bus came,” he said.

Michael also revealed that it took a lot of discipline to remain committed to his goal especially with his diet considering his part-time after-school job was at a fast-food restaurant.

Terrance Jones, who works as a family specialist and graduation coach at Michael’s school said that Watson’s story stuck with him. Speaking to CNN, he said, “It’s an example of courageous personal development that’s rare for a high school student. Mike’s decision to the initiative to live a healthier lifestyle and to stay consistent with it will always stay with me.”

Jones revealed that Michael’s story was motivation for him to create a “McKinley Senior Limelight” on Facebook to showcase students’ stories and Watson was a recent feature.

“After years of being overweight, Michael took matters into his own hands. He adopted a healthier lifestyle of eating and exercise by taking the road less traveled…” the post reads.

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Retired Cop Bursts Into Tears When Former Partner Hands Him Card Offering Him Her Kidney

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Retired Cop Bursts Into Tears When Former Partner Hands Him Card Offering Him Her Kidney

A retired Maryland police officer gave a piece of herself to save the life of her former partner. Stanley Barsch from Middletown, Maryland found out he had polycystic kidney disease in 2002. His mom, who also had the disease was in need of a transplant. “I went through all the testing, and in the final phase I found out I too had the same disease,” Barsch told Liftable.

“It was devastating, but from the aspect that I was trying to save my mother’s life and wasn’t able to provide her the gift of life that I desperately wanted. She ended up on dialysis until 2005 until she got a cadaver kidney, and she passed away in 2017 with a weak heart and sepsis.” He added.

A retired Maryland police officer gave a piece of herself to save the life of her former partner.

A retired Maryland police officer gave a piece of herself to save the life of her former partner.

Barsch revealed that the genetic disorder caused fluid-filled cysts to grow inside his kidneys. The organs had swelled to 15 to 20 pounds each, the average kidney weighs 0 .25 pounds. “The massive cysts caused my function to drop steadily over the past couple years. I started losing a lot of my energy noticeably in the past few years. This past December I entered stage 5 kidney failure, and with 17% function and dropping I desperately needed a kidney.” He said.

Barsch posted on his Facebook account looking for a donor. Without telling him, his former partner in the police force, Megan Ambrose, underwent testing to see if she was a match. The results showed she was 100% compatible.

Read also: Girl, 3, Hailed A Hero For Keeping Baby Brother Alive For Days After Parents’ Murder-Suicide

So she planned a little surprise to break the news to Barsch. She invited her former partner and his wife over to her home on February 14, which is both Valentine’s Day and National Donor Day. She then handed them a handmade card that read, “So I heard urine need of a kidney … want mine???… Turns out that we are a perfect match, not only on the job but in blood and organs, too. You always had my back on the road and off. Now you can have my kidney.”

Barsch burst into tears and both he and his wife embraced Ambrose in a tight hug. As it turns out, Ambrose knew she was a match for Barsch in the middle of January but wanted to first talk it over with her husband and family.

“Later in January she asked if me and my wife Jessica would meet with her and her husband Chris. We didn’t know if she wasn’t going to be able to do it, wasn’t a great match, was scared to do it or what. We didn’t know what to expect.” Barsch revealed.

The procedure was done on May 14. In a Facebook post Barsch said it was not only a success, the surgeon declared that Ambrose’s kidney was beautiful.

The procedure was done on May 14. In a Facebook post Barsch said it was not only a success, the surgeon declared that Ambrose’s kidney was beautiful.

“There are no words that do our partnership justice. You experience things with your partner that you can’t really explain. … He’s my ride or die.” Ambrose told PEOPLE.

The procedure was done on May 14. In a Facebook post Barsch said it was not only a success, the surgeon declared that Ambrose’s kidney was beautiful. “The kidney is functioning normally. We are happy.” said transplant surgeon Dr. Seyed Ghasemian.

“We were always close, now we are one. We are bonded for life, she is more than a sister that I never wanted.” Barsch said.

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