Former X Factor dancer hands out 'confidence stars' to schools in Milton Keynes

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A mum who danced on the X Factor has donated Christmas Confidence Stars to dozens of schools to help children shine in the New Year.

A mum who danced on the X Factor has donated Christmas Confidence Stars to dozens of schools to help children shine in the New Year.

Ife Thomas developed the silver mirrored stars after she became worried about her own son's self-esteem.

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She has each star inscribed with the words: 'I am Somebody, I am good enough, I can do anything, I like myself.”

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The former Newport Pagnell schoolgirl is giving 100 stars to primary and SEN schools in Milton Keynes and Bedford.

She said: “My oldest son was diagnosed with autism, and I was afraid for his future. In 2017, it was reported that one in eight five to 19 year olds had at least one mental health disorder and I was determined for that not to happen to my children.”

Ife attended school assemblies to introduce the concept of the star and explain the science behind positive self-talk.

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She said: “I believe that every child has a gift and it’s for us parents and educators to ensure they have the confidence to peruse their dreams. I feel that Christmas is a great time to spread as much joy and happiness as possible which is why I’m donating the confidence stars.”

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Ife says her own children recite the words on the star twice daily and have experienced “vast improvements” in communication, self-belief and overall happiness.

The success of the star led Ife to market it to the public and her creation is now championed by mental health professionals.

Ife works as a motivational speaker and has her own website called www.mindworkout.co.uk.

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But her career started as a dancer on the X Factor and he has performed on BBC TV shows , created girl groups and appeared in commercials and music videos before a serious knee injury ended her career.

She has also sung on stage with artists including Leona Lewis, Elton John and Paul McCartney.