A West Bridgford School Wears White for Albinism Awareness Day

Jessica and Rebecca Bennett (jess on the left) with Rebecca’s class teacher at Jess Gray, Mrs Ali Wenborn.

The school ‘dress down’ day was planned on Friday, 10 June and the whole of Jesse Gray Primary in Musters Road, West Bridgford, were invited to dress up in white because of the international albinism awareness day.

The international awareness day is today, Monday, 13 June and is backed by the United Nations

Andrew and Jo Bennett’s daughters, Jessica, aged 8 and Rebecca, aged 5, attend Jesse Gray and are thought to be the only siblings in Nottinghamshire with albinism

About Albinism

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· Albinism is a rare, recessive genetic condition. Only around 3,000 people have albinism in the UK. It means a lack of pigment (the colouring agent in people’s eyes and skin) meaning – usually – white hair and pale skin that is at great risk of sunburn. Hence asking Jessica and Rebecca’s classmates, and the whole school being invited to dress in white for this special day.

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· Jessica produced a special PowerPoint about albinism and what it means and this was presented at a series of special assemblies throughout the week, including one on Friday 10 June. Accompanying Jess and Rebecca at the assemblies was Head Teacher Sarah Law, who also spoke, She supported the initiative to explain more about what albinism means

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L-R: Joe Enoch, Safa Sarwar, Jessica Bennett, her sister Rebecca, then Rebecca’s classmates Lucy Scoon and Raffy Rennoldson with Jessica’s class teacher Aby Massey

· The main point of the ‘wear white’ day, however, was informing pupils about this rare condition – albinism – and what it really means, and helping to dispel myths that exist around albinism

Andrew Bennett told The Wire: “My wife Jo and I are very pleased with how the awareness day went and the fact that the whole school embraced the concept. We’re also very proud of both Jessica and Rebecca for what they have done to help spread the positive word about the realities of albinism to their classmates and beyond this year.’