A man with Down’s syndrome, who has already acted professionally and won a gold medal at the Special Olympics has set himself a new challenge – to work as a fashion model.
Adam Wild, 24, who lives in Newbiggin by the Sea in Northumberland with parents Bernadette and Patrick, met Princess Diana when he was five; has climbed up to the crow's nest of a tall ship out at sea, and won a swimming freestyle gold medal at the 2013 Special Olympics in Bath.
He's a keen performer, and takes his health and fitness seriously. As well as being a regular at the gym, he's captain of the Newcastle United Foundation football team for people with Down's syndrome, which plays at St James' Park and across the UK.
Adam also studied drama and dance at the Chicken Shed Academy in London. He's a talented impressionist, has appeared in theatre productions and featured in an award-winning short film for Headway Arts.
Bernadette and Patrick adopted Adam when he was a year old and have encouraged him to follow his dreams and never give up. Bernadette said: “Adam is a truly remarkable young man and has never let anything stand in his way.
“He suffered some bullying at school in Watford, but he rose above it and he's grown into a very confident man. Once he sets his sights on doing something, he doesn't give up.”
Now Adam has a new goal: to make it as a fashion model. His Aw-Some Model fashion page on Facebook has more than 1,200 followers and he's appeared on a charity poster with his football teammates that is on display at Newcastle Airport.
Adam, who combines this with a job in the café at Hepscott garden centre, said: “I'm really happy with my life, and I want to follow my dreams.
“We all have dreams and if you do things right they can come true. I can walk tall wherever I go now. I'm very rich with my family, friends and everyone around me who makes sure I'm happy in my life.”
Bernadette added: “There's no stopping Adam once he sets himself a challenge. He's a real advocate for people with learning disabilities; he can tell people what it's like so they understand, and he's helping to change perceptions, and how people relate to people with conditions such as Down's syndrome.
“We're behind him all the way. He's a real inspiration.”