Chloe "Coco" Herrington was selected as the winner and will fly with her parents to San Diego as part of an all-expense paid trip to participate in a photo shoot. Coco was chosen out of 800 submissions, according to a press release.
Coco was born with Down syndrome and before her second birthday also diagnosed with leukemia.
"With a spirited attitude and unexplainable perseverance, Coco fought her leukemia into remission," according to the release. "Infantino and Step2’s team was moved by her mother’s winning essay, in which she describes how Coco also inspired the family to adopt a child with Down syndrome over 6,000 miles away."
The full press release is below:
No two kids are alike. Infantino® and Step2®, leaders in thoughtfully-designed, fun and inspiring products for babies and kids, think that’s beautiful.
Step2 and sister company Infantino celebrate this uniqueness with their third annual advertising campaign “Everybody Plays,” centered around a photo shoot at San Diego’s Balboa Park on September 25 and 26. Children with and without special needs will travel with their families from all over the nation to participate in the shoot, supported by the nonprofit National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS).
“As a nationally recognized brand, we have the power to help foster the acceptance of all kids by ensuring their representation in all forms of advertising,” said Colette Cosky, marketing director at Infantino. “Our intention is to make reality the new norm and reduce the stigma that often surrounds children with special needs.”
New this year, Infantino and Step2 held an essay contest on “how families promote self-acceptance and/or the acceptance of others.” Out of 800 submissions, three-year-old Chloe “Coco” Herrington from Roseville, CA, was selected as the grand prize winner and will fly with her parents to San Diego as part of an all-expense paid trip to participate in the photo shoot.
In addition to being born with Down syndrome, Coco was diagnosed with leukemia before her second birthday. With a spirited attitude and unexplainable perseverance, Coco fought her leukemia into remission. Infantino and Step2’s team was moved by her mother’s winning essay, in which she describes how Coco also inspired the family to adopt a child with Down syndrome over 6,000 miles away.
“It’s a story like Coco’s that shows the power of acceptance and why we feel so passionate about the potential positive impact of ‘Everybody Plays,’” said Meghan Hale, marketing communications director at Step2.
Through Coco’s health challenges, her mother Beth gained comfort from reading photojournalist and celebrity-blogger Kelle Hampton’s “Enjoying the Small Things,” which details a journey while raising her own child with special needs. Fittingly, “Everybody Plays” will be photographed by Hampton for the third year.