At just 14 years old, Stephanie Kurlow is ready to change the world and change perceptions as she attempts to become the first professional Muslim Hijabi ballerina.

Australian-based Muslim student Stephanie Kurlow’s story came to the world’s attention when she recently launched a crowdfunding campaign to help raise money to pay for private ballet and tutoring tuition as well as ballet supplies and entry fees for competitions. Moved by her powerful story, sports brand Bjorn Borg has now announced it will help 14 year old after being “genuinely inspired” by the teen.

Stephanie Kurlow To Become First Professional Muslim Ballerina

She is now under The Game Changer Scholarship, which was created specifically to support athletes with “extraordinary visions and dreams. People who, not only dream about a better future, but also have a plan to get there. People who can change the game.” And boy, is Stephanie ready to shake things up.

Since offering to help, Stephanie has appeared in an advert for Bjorn Borg, in which she offers encouraging advice on how we should all chase our dreams – “Always be your best. Never give up. Fight. Share your strength. Spread your wings. Fly. Change the perspective. Fall down. Get back up… Love what you wear. Love to stand out. Live to change the world.”

Stephanie Kurlow

Stephanie Kurlow, a 14-year-old Sydney schoolgirl, practices ballet in her family’s backyard

What makes her words so powerful is that she clearly lives by them. Since converting to Islam in 2010, Stephanie has been worried about her career in ballet, “because we thought there would be no way of myself becoming a professional ballerina as there were no facilitations or services targeted at Muslim girls… In this day and age, there is a lack of facilitation for youth who are disengaged or of a different religion or race.”

Stephanie Kurlow

However, the talented teen is determined to make a difference, she added: “I plan on bringing the world together by becoming the very first Muslim ballerina so that I can inspire so many other people to believe in themselves and pursue their dreams. My dream is to train in a full-time ballet school catered to aspiring young girls who want to train 30-45 hours a week so they can become a professional ballerina. I want to encourage everyone to join together no matter what faith, race or colour. To bring harmony and a world of acceptance for future generations. YOU can help me achieve this dream!”

Her aim is to be the first professional ballerina who wears a hijab on stage, and with this amount of determination and talent we truly believe she only has success in her path. 

Good luck Stephanie.

If you wish to help her fulfill her dreams, you can help sponsor her here.

Images: Getty