Seven-year-old Henry from Gloucester stars in new video to challenge people's ideas about Down's syndrome

  • Report by Ken Goodwin


A seven-year-old boy from Gloucester is one of the stars of a new Christmas video by the Down's syndrome awareness charity "Wouldn't Change a Thing".

The campaign video "What Do You See?" has been released to coincide with a controversial storyline on a TV soap.

Characters in ITV's Emmerdale decide to terminate a baby when they are told it will be born with Down's syndrome.

  • Watch 'What Do You See?' by Tom Kerr and Colin Kennedy

Henry Charlton and his mother Tania feature in the video and she hopes the charity can help dispel some of the myths.

Tania Charlton says, "Henry is an absolute sunshine in our world. And many other people's worlds. He surprises every single day with what he achieves in his sheer determination."

My heart bursts with love for Henry. He can have me in tears everyday. I have three children, and they are all my pride and joy, but there is something special about Henry because when he achieves something he has worked so hard for it.

Tania Charlton, Henry's mum and Down's syndrome campaigner
Henry's mum says 'He surprises every single day, with what he achieves in his sheer determination.' Credit: ITV West Country

The charity says its campaigns are intended to challenge the negative outdated misconceptions about Down's syndrome by showing insights into the true lives experienced by families today.

It says it knows these negative misconceptions will be a key issue for the characters in the Emmerdale storyline.

Down's syndrome campaigner Tania Charlton and her son Henry getting some fresh air in a park in Gloucester. Credit: ITV West Country

Tania Charlton, who is a director of "Wouldn't Change a Thing", says "I would like there to be a point where a charity like ours is not needed to create awareness. It does feel like there is a constant slog to prove our children's worth.

"I think we are sometimes not believed which is crazy as we are the ones living it. I would just like to see more representation, more inclusion, I would like services to be easier to come by for our kids, that's the biggest thing."

Tania Charlton says her 'heart bursts with love for Henry Credit: ITV West Country

'What Do You See' was written by Tom Kerr who has no connection with Down's syndrome. He was inspired to write it when he saw a photo of his grandson Aaron with Rosie, the daughter of "Wouldn't Change a Thing" chairman, Jamie McCallum. It challenged Tom's perceptions and the song is the result.

The track is available on all major music streaming and download sites with all proceeds going towards positive awareness and supporting families.

The video is made up of clips the charity had in house - and a few unseen outtakes.

Find out more about the song and 'Wouldn't Change a Thing' here.


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