Sochi 2014 Paralympics: Inspirational video for Winter Games motivates people living with disabilities to #NEVERSTOP

The video stars Russian supermodel and Paralympics ambassador Natalia Vodianova

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The Independent Online

If you had a disability, would you let it stop you from following your dreams? This is the question posed in a powerful short film that aims to raise awareness of people living with disability around the world.

The inspirational 90-second video called #NEVERSTOP has been released as part of campaign to change attitudes towards disabilities and stars Russian supermodel and Paralympics ambassador Natalia Vodianova.

The first half of the video features Ms Vodianova running through a dark warehouse wearing a bionic leg while in a voiceover she asks herself what would happen if it became difficult to move forward.

“What then? I’d like to think I wouldn’t have given up and continued moving forward but it’s more likely that I would have stopped. But I know people who haven’t.”

The film then cuts away to heart-warming real-life footage of Paralympic athletes taking part in winter sports, before ending with the message to never stop.

The Paralympic cause is particularly personal for Ms Vodianova, whose sister suffered from cerebral palsy.

She explained that both she and family suffered from the stigma attached to disability during her childhood in Russia.

Ms Vodianova said “I see the problem not just in the infrastructure and the lack of a barrier-free environment which is an inevitable consequence of disability.

“The real problem lies in the misguided perceptions and attitudes of society towards people with special needs."

She went on to say: “What I learned from some of my friends, Paralympians, is that even the biggest challenge can be an opportunity and it is our choice to make the most.”

It is hoped that the film will inspire people to support Paralympic athletes and create an enduring legacy that will help to end the stigma associated with disability.