It all started when then 17-year-old Lizzie Velasquez found a video of herself on YouTube titled, “World’s Ugliest Woman”. Lizzie was diagnosed with a rare congenital disease and has subsequently been on the receiving end of bullying about her looks and the disease since she was small.
After viewing the YouTube video, Velasquez took to the internet and used TED Talks to speak to over 10 million people about her ordeal, the effects bullying has had on her life and the toll it has taken on others.
It was from this talk that she told The Washington Post about the numerous personal stories she had received and how she continues to,"get encouragement from them and know that I am living the life that I’m supposed to.”
Velasquez has continued her anti-bullying advocacy by teaming up with Represent and the Megan Meier Foundation in which five dollars from every shirt sold will benefit the organization.
The shirt titled, I Can Even, was meant to take a rather negative message - I can’t even - and put a positive spin on it.
“I am so pumped about this shirt,” Lizzie exclaimed, “If I ever see you in public wearing this shirt I am going to freak out and ask you for a photo!”
The shirts are only available for a limited amount of time on Lizzie’s Represent campaign page.