Down syndrome is the result of the 21st chromosome having a third copy of a DNA strand, and that is why it is celebrated on that specific day. For more information on the subject click here.
As a parent of a daughter with down syndrome, I believe we do not have a special needs child, but with a special child who has additional needs. There are always needs to address, through therapies and support resources that we depend on for our children to grow and develop. For us though, one of the major ways we see our child blossom is through social inclusion. More relevant today than ever, is the acceptance of those who are different, through race, through gender, through religious beliefs. For those who are born with additional developmental needs, this is essential. Being accepted in their peer groups and social areas is what gives a child belief in who they are, and knowledge that even though they are different, they are also capable of achieving their own independence and sense of self. It is what emotionally helps them grow. Most parents put their children through public systems, and stress that integrating them into a normal school is essential for what comes after the education process.
Individuals with down syndrome have seen their life span increase drastically over the past few decades through greater understanding. We can all help this along, for being accepted and awareness helps a person thrive and overcome the obstacles that may present themselves along the way.
We ask that you help support and spread awareness on World Down Syndrome day by wearing different colored socks. This is a fun and symbolic way to show that we are all born as unique individuals!