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Latina model with Down syndrome ruled the runway at the New York Fashion Week

A 22-year-old model with Down syndrome is blessing the internet with her fabulous Instagram posts, all while inspiring other women to be “limitless.”

Sofía Jirau wanted to be a model and entrepreneur ever since she was 5 years old. While most people abandon their childhood dreams to pursue other careers, Sofía stuck with her ambitions and did everything in her power to reach them. At the young age of 22, this lady already has a solid list of accomplishments to her name. Just recently, she worked the runway during the New York Fashion Week!

“When I was little, I looked myself in the mirror and said, ‘I’m going to be a model and a businesswoman,’” she told PEOPLE.

And nothing can stop her from doing exactly that.

Her Instagram posts show her modeling, doing photo shoots, and sporting runway looks. Because of her beauty and talent, she has earned a following of 45,000 people on the popular social media platform. At the NYFW, she showcased her flair for walking the runway, modeling for the dress designer, Marisa Santiagoduri, during her show on February 10.

Sofía’s strength comes from the fact that she always believed in her capabilities. This woman never doubted herself, and this confidence was a significant contributor to her success.

“I was born for this and I want to show the world that I have everything a model needs to shine,” Sofía captioned one of her Instagram posts.

Sofía receives a lot of support from the people closest to her. Before the NYFW, her mom, dad, and three siblings all flew from Puerto Rico to witness her strut down the runway. Her family has always been proud of her, and forever will be.

“I felt really good the first time,” Sofía said, recalling the first time she ever modeled in front of her family. “Everyone clapped for me.”

A team of volunteers is helping Sofía manage the logistics behind her fashion and photo shoots. Without them, she knows that it wouldn’t be possible for her to accomplish all her goals.

What’s next on this young achiever’s list? Traveling and modeling in one of the most fashionable places in the world – Europe!

“We’re trying to connect her with designers over there. If that’s her goal, it’s our challenge,” says Armando Lorenzo, a volunteer who works with Sofía. “We’re working hard to take her there if that’s what she wants.”

Her modeling career is already taking off, and so is her dream of becoming a businesswoman. Sofía launched her own fashion brand called Alavett, which is how she likes to spell her favorite words, “I love it.” The line sells shirts, wallets, mugs, and phone cases, all printed with the brand name and a heart doodle.

As for her fashion inspiration, it isn’t surprising that J. Lo is her icon.

“I want to meet Jennifer Lopez. I like how she dresses and how she is. I love all of her clothes,” Sofía said. “I love her songs, her CDs, her photos. Everything.”

Sofía is a big dreamer, and she follows through by putting in the hard work. This woman is definitely unstoppable, and she wants other people to see themselves that way so they can also achieve their dreams!

“Inside and out, there are no limits. There aren’t,” Sofía says. “Everyone can accomplish their dreams.”

Watch Sofía strut her stuff during the New York Fashion week below.


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What an inspiration! Get a glimpse into Sofía’s fabulous life by following her on Instagram.

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