Taryn: ‘At dance we don’t focus on how people look…but how we dance.’

Coming soon to CBC Gem.

17-year-old Taryn is a competitive dancer, rock climbing instructor and honour roll student.

Taryn was born with Treacher Collins syndrome, a genetic condition that affects her facial structure. She's active, positive and ambitious — and puts a lot of pressure on herself to succeed. Taryn feels she has something prove and isn't going to let her facial difference stop her.

Taryn documents her day-to-day life, including a charity fashion show where she walks the runway with 12 other models who also have facial differences.

Since Red Button...

Taryn will graduate from high school — and complete her competitive dance season — in June. She'll spend the summer teaching rock climing at a summer camp, then start university in the fall. 


About Face (1-800-665-3223) promotes and enhances the emotional and mental well-being of individuals with facial differences and their families through social and peer support, information, educational programs, and public awareness.

Kids Help Phone (1-800-688-6868) is a 24/7 national counselling hotline for youth. From Wednesday to Sunday, a counsellor is available online or through the Always There mobile app. Hours are 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. EST.

To call a crisis centre, Your Life Counts and the Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention (CASP) have comprehensive lists of centres across Canada that are operating help lines. 

Youth Space runs online and text messaging counselling every night, from 6 p.m. to 12 a.m. PST. Services are free, but texting rates may apply.

YouthInBC.com provides youth resources on their website and an online chat service where you can chat 1-on-1 with a trained volunteer, operated by the Crisis Centre of BC.

Mental Health Services (1-866-531-2600) connects callers with mental health and addiction resources in Ontario. They can be reached by phone, email, or web chat. Their search engine has a database of relevant services and organizations in the province.

BeanBagChat allows young people (aged 16 - 29) to speak with another young peer supporter about whatever's on their mind, from the comfort of their own device.

The Native Youth Crisis Hotline (1-877-209-1266) is available for any First Nations youth in crisis or looking for referrals.

Naseeha (1-866-627-3342) is a helpline for Muslim youth across North America, available weekday nights.

Season 2 episodes