Young advocate represents those with disabilities

TORONTO- Nicole Flynn, having down syndrome hasn’t stopped her from doing great things.

She’s been swimming at Variety Village, a community that offers specialized programs and brings specific services to people regardless of their abilities, since she was four-years-old.

Last year, Flynn won a gold medal in synchronized swimming at the World Down Syndrome Championships in Italy.

“If you’re a winner or not it doesn’t matter. It’s about  being who you are and being proud of yourself,” said Flynn.

At 20-years-old her calender is full but not just with competitive swimming. This summer she’s focusing on soccer, photography and theatre.

Archie Allison is the program director at Variety Village. Part of his role is to help people find new and rewarding ways to feel active, involved and included.

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He quickly noticed what’s most important to Nicole: having the opportunity to speak about the rights of people with disabilities.

“She writes her own speeches and coordinates her own speeches and when she delivers it, I don’t think you can make a better impact having someone speak for themselves,” said Allison.

Kathy Primrose, Flynn’s  mother is a proud parent and says she has a lot to be thankful for.

“She will be able to live independently and be employed. She’s got 17 high school credits already and planning to get 30. As far as a disability, as she said it’s what society puts on her, not her own, not having down syndrome,” said Primrose.

At a young age, Allison knew Flynn would be something to reckon with.  She’s enthusiastic, determined and a perseveres no matter what she chooses to do.

“The reason I’m proud of myself is because I, the more I achieve, I succeed!” said Flynn.

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