Who we are
Before you spend any time with Harry you may notice that he looks and acts very differently from other children his age. He was born in 2005 with a rare cranio-facial condition called Goldenhar syndrome which means that his left eye, eye socket, ear and nostril never developed. His twin brother was unaffected by the syndrome. He was also diagnosed, aged 3, with autism and he is technically non-verbal although he’s a real chatterbox in his own way.
Harry loves pizza, remote controls and watching YouTube. He can bounce for hours; on the trampoline, beds and sofa! He has a very mischievous sense of humour and loves cuddles with his family. Although you may only see Harrys differences before you meet him, as soon as you have spent some time with him you realise that he is a wonderful boy, much like many other boys and he is so much More Than a Face!
People react to Harry in various ways. Some smile. Others whisper, stare, point and laugh. On line, people have said some truly awful things about the way he looks. Harrys friends and family all look out for Harry but his mum Charlene is aware that he may not always have someone with him when people are unkind. It is important to her for Harrys future that people understand the reasons and the people behind facial differences so that they can better understand and become more accepting and inclusive.
More Than a Face was founded by Charlene to educate and inspire people who may never have met someone with a facial difference before and to help them realise the consequences of their reactions, both positive and negative. She hopes that her positive message of understanding and inclusion will help to change attitudes and behaviour and that people will realise the power in seeing each other for who they are and not just what they look like.
Read about Charlies work in supporting individuals and teams to identify, challenge and break down any barriers they have created so that they can achieve the success and happiness they deserve in life here.
Charlie also mentors and supports mums of disabled children and those with additional needs in her company SEND Gin and Cheese CIC. She shares personal and powerful blogs about life being altered by Harrys disabilities and she also works with businesses who want to better support parent carers in their organisation. Click on the images below to go to the relevant websites and find out more.