It's safe to say our Woman Crush Wednesday this week is a force to be reckoned with. At only 19, Zendaya has starred in multiple Disney Channel television shows and movies, placed second on Dancing with the Stars, released a platinum-certified single, joined pal Taylor Swift in her "Bad Blood" music video, and, you know, graduated high school.
While it's clear that Zendaya is massively talented, she also has a massive heart. An active social media user, she often posts images supporting self-love and confidence. She's known for calling out those who are wrongfully mean to others, and she fiercely defends those who she loves, especially her family. Zendaya uses her platform to discuss social justice and feminist issues important to her. To celebrate her 19th birthday, she sponsored an online fundraiser partnered with UNAIDS and iKAGENG to help three brothers who lost both of their parents.
Members of the media criticized Zendaya's appearance at the 2015 Academy Awards. She had dreadlocks, and various reporters made derogatory comments. However, Zendaya handled the situation with maturity and grace beyond her years, and she used it as a moment to educate others in a positive manner. Last week, Mattel announced a special edition Barbie of Zendaya to commemorate her entire look that day - including her dreadlocks. She took to Instagram to thank Mattel, noting how times have changed and she finally found a Barbie who looked like her.
We applaud Zendaya for continuing to push barriers and strive for something better. We cannot wait to see how she helps and supports more people in the future!