Dad of girl with Down syndrome named community hero by Pride of Britain

Jamie McCallum, from Prestwick, created viral video ‘Wouldn’t Change a Thing’ - inspired by his daughter, Rosie.

A dad of an eight-year-old girl with Down syndrome has been honoured as an unsung hero at this year’s Pride of Britain Awards.

Jamie McCallum, from Prestwick, received the TSB Community Hero Award for making a viral video to challenge negative perceptions surrounding the condition.

He says the music video titled ‘Wouldn’t Change a Thing’ was inspired by his daughter, eight-year-old Rosie.

In 2018, Jamie put together the Carpool Karaoke-style film of 50 mums and their children with Down’s syndrome singing to the song A Thousand Years.

It racked up more than 500 million views and made headlines across the world.

The video was the brainchild of Coventry mum, Becky Carless, who came up with the idea to challenge negative perceptions, using the hashtag #wouldntchangeathing.

While she had no problem recruiting another 49 mums to take part, Becky, whose son Archie has Downs, had no idea how to edit the video and asked for help online.

Jamie saw her appeal and made the film at home in Prestwick.

He said: “Rosie was born with Down syndrome unexpectedly.

“The perception at that time is that you’ve been landed with a bunch of problems and that is what I now know to be wholly untrue.

“When I had that realisation I felt compelled to tell everyone about it.”

The success of the video led to the creation of a parent-led charity of the same name, with Jamie and Rebecca as Founder Trustees.

‘Wouldn’t Change A Thing’ challenges negative and outdated perceptions in the media and advises organisations on inclusion.

It also offers positive stories to families, including a new book that is given to every new parent of a baby with Down syndrome, to give a positive insight into what lies ahead, based on the experiences of real families.

The star-studded Pride of Britain audience is returned for the first time following the pandemic last week.

Carol Vorderman was joined by co-host Ashley Banjo as Britain bounced back from a tumultuous 18 months.

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