Diandra Forrest is the first person with albinism to be signed to a major modeling agency in the US. Last year she posed for the cover of Ebony Magazine, another first. 


Albinism occurs at a rate of about 1 in every 20,000 people worldwide. It can affect a person of any race or ethnicity, and aside from causing vision problems and sensitivity to the sun, it generally isn’t considered a detriment to one’s health. But for some it is a threat to their lives. In many African countries they are discriminated against, and sometimes killed because of long-held beliefs their limbs and bones can cure illnesses. The United Nations and Amnesty International have both raised alarms this year about a wave of attacks and killings of albinos in Malawi. But while the situation is dire in Malawi for people with albinism, progress is being made elsewhere.


On the second International Albinism Awareness Day, The Stream speaks with people who have defeated the stigma to become standouts. 

In this episode of The Stream, we speak with:

Coumba Makalou Keita

Executive director/president, The Salif Keita Global Foundation

Diandra Forrest @diandraforrest


Mpho Tjope @tjopem


Peter Ash

Founder and CEO, Under the Same Sun

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