Kansas City non-profit gains international attention for series - KCTV5

Kansas City non-profit gains international attention for series of movies to end bullying

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A facial anomaly can be a cleft lip and palate, a birthmark, facial paralysis or in 8-year-old Winston Bertrand's case, lymphangioma. (Just Like You Films) A facial anomaly can be a cleft lip and palate, a birthmark, facial paralysis or in 8-year-old Winston Bertrand's case, lymphangioma. (Just Like You Films)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

A metro non-profit is getting international attention for its series of movies to end bullying. 

Just Like You Films creates movies starring children with various conditions or problems that might make them feel different. And now a new movie is set to launch starring some metro kids.

The newest film is titled Just Like You - Facial Anomalies. If you don't know what a facial anomaly is, that's OK. A brave little boy and his friends are helping teach all of us.

A facial anomaly can be a cleft lip and palate, a birthmark, facial paralysis or in 8-year-old Winston Bertrand's case, lymphangioma. 

The Weatherby Lake Boy is only eight years old, and he's already had 22 surgeries. When he's not in the hospital, he likes to play with his friends, just like any other kid.

"Watch TV, hang out with my friends, go outside, go swimming, go play on the trampoline," Winston said.

Winston's mom was thrilled when the non-profit approached them about her little boy starring in a movie about facial anomalies.

"As a mom, it's amazing to have a movie like Just Like You Films because every day we're facing the obstacles of people being uneducated about what Winston is facing. A movie like this does the empowerment to kids everywhere and adults everywhere," Jennifer Bertrand said.

Just Like You movies always star children who have whatever condition might make them feel different alongside their best friends and classmates who don't have it.

So Winston made sure his best friend Andrew was by his side in the movie. 

CEO and founder Jen Greenstreet lives and works in Kansas City.

"It's overwhelming. It's just such a testament to how needed these resources are," she said.

Greenstreet quit her job as a Jackson County prosecutor to start the non-profit 14 years ago. Since then, her movies have won two Emmys and been shared hundreds of thousands of times in multiple languages in hospitals and schools across the globe.

"When a child like Winston is able to look through a camera lens into the eyes of the viewer and tell them, 'You know I'm a kid, just like you. And I have a lymphangeoma, and it makes me a little bit different. But mostly we have way more alike than we do different because we are all human beings,'" Greenstreet said.

Just Like You has made six movies so far and already working on a wide range of new topics like diabetes, depression, in the LGBTQ community and in the foster care system.

And on Friday, Just Like You is holding a fundraiser to raise more money to make more films. It's a pickleball tournament at Chicken-N-Pickle in the Northland.

If you'd like to go to the fundraiser, click here.

If you would like to share any of the completed Just Like You Films with your child or any organization, they are free to download and share. Click here.

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