Ellie Goldstein Interview Apr 16, 2021
My Story Matters: a quick chat with Ellie Goldstein
As the My Story Matters movement gathers momentum – more than 55,000 people have donated their story so far – we caught up with Ellie Goldstein, a top model and campaigner for representation. Ellie has partnered with us as both a model and as an ambassador for the My Story Matters programme.
Ellie, why are you excited to be working with us on the My Story Matters Campaign?
I’m so excited to be working with you to launch the My Story Matters campaign. I have always loved using Avon products as they are good quality with a great price tag as well, which is important to me. Not only do I love the products, but when I modelled for you recently, I found out more about the work you do to support women across the world and thought it was amazing.
What resonated with you?
The My Story Matters campaign is especially important because, now more than ever, women need to hear each other’s stories, to find inspiration, and help respond to the challenges we face. For me, it’s about ensuring women world over feel happy with themselves, feel confident and beautiful.
Why do you think its important that women share their everyday stories, struggles and personal achievements with one another?
It’s so important to talk, share news and find inspiration from other people’s stories. It’s also good for our mental health. It’s not just me who feels this way either – your recent research revealed 72% of women find comfort in being able to share their experiences with each other. Following a year where we’ve not been able to share these experiences and connect in person like we normally would, being able to find a way to share these stories and struggles is vital.
The pandemic has led to increased feelings of doubt for over half of women globally. What has been your biggest personal challenge since the pandemic began?
It has to be not seeing my friends and being able to go to college which I love. I’m very sociable and find it hard not to see people in person. We’ve been connecting in other ways though, lots of video calls and sharing things on social media – but I’m really looking forward to when we can all see each other again.
Do you have any achievements or everyday stories to share which might inspire other women to overcome their challenges?
Representation is very important to me – I always wanted the world to see that anyone can model and act with a disability. When I was younger sometimes people would ignore me, or talk to my mum instead of me, until they realised that I could communicate too, and that I am just like them. So, when my first big modelling campaign came out, I felt so proud of myself for being chosen, and being able to share my story with more people and help them realise they could achieve anything.
I just say to myself every day – be yourself, be confident in what you do and never give up!
Over a quarter of women globally don’t share their own struggles on social media sites because they feel judged. Do you have any experiences with this?
When I first started working with you on the My Story Matters campaign and you told me about your research and women feeling judged on social media I was saddened. I am really confident to be myself on my social channels and always lucky to have very positive comments and likes, from people all over the world.
I think the My Story Matters Gallery is a great way to share your story – it’s judgement free, and you can see so many other stories from women all over the world. Everything from everyday stories to people overcoming the odds or challenges they felt were insurmountable. It’s really inspiring.
What is the first thing you’re going to do when the pandemic is over?
The first thing I am going to do when the pandemic is over is to go shopping with my friends. I really miss the shops and the experience. Then I am going to go out for a lovely dinner with all my friends!
What have you been doing to cope with the stress of lockdown?
I love dancing and so I dance as much as I can to relieve stress, it makes me feel happy!
Have you found any positives that have come out of lockdown so far?
Although it’s definitely been lonely and stressful at times, I have actually really enjoyed spending more time with my family and my dog. Normally I would be at college or out quite a lot, so I do think it’s made me really appreciate how lucky I am.
What has been your breakthrough moment in your life?
For me it was definitely when I was scouted for my first major modelling campaign. I felt so proud of myself for being able to show the world that anyone with Down’s syndrome can model and act. It was incredible. All of the likes and comments on social media across the world have been overwhelming.
It has opened up so many doors for me – not only to help inspire others who might think they can’t do something, but also for my career. In fact, as well as working with you on the My Story Matters campaign, I’ve recently shot for their beauty campaign and I’ve been the cover girl for some amazing magazines.
I’m not done yet; I really want to show the world who I am and what I can achieve.
What advice would you give your younger self now?
I would advise my younger self to follow your dreams, be positive in life.
What do you want to achieve in the next year?
I want to be on more covers of great magazines, work with more brands and be a great role model. To give other people like me hopes of achieving what they want in life – to defy everyone’s expectations.
What advice would you give to someone who is struggling to find confidence, either at work, in their social circles or at home?
Speak about how you feel to family or friends and try and build your confidence and believe in yourself. Of course, you should also check out the My Story Matters gallery – there are so many amazing stories on there from women around the world that might just inspire you!
Think your story doesn’t make a difference? Think again. Every story chips away at the barriers holding women back. Every story rewrites the future. And not just the big things but the small achievements every day. Donate your story now watchmenow.avon.com