October is National Down Syndrome Awareness Month in the United States. The National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) was instrumental in establishing this official month over thirty years ago in concert with its mission to be the national advocate for the value, acceptance and inclusion of people with Down syndrome.
Since 1995, NDSS has highlighted the annual celebration through the National Buddy Walk Program, which seeks to promote the NDSS mission on a local level with over 250 Walks expected in 2013. Last year, over 295,000 people participated in Buddy Walks throughout the country, which together raised over $11.75 million for local and national initiatives.
This year, the National Buddy Walk Program is supported by the Emmy-award winning children’s entertainers, the Imagination Movers, who have brought the energy and enthusiasm of their motto, “Reach high, think big, work hard, have fun!” to the Buddy Walk public service announcement.
“Buddy Walks are fantastic events where smiles are shared, hugs are free, games are played and most importantly, footsteps are heard as we all walk together to support people with Down syndrome,” said Imagination Mover Scott Durbin.
NDSS prides itself on its vast and up-to-date information, and invites everyone to take advantage of both our print and digital resources.
• NDSS offers a [’Down syndrome fact page":http://www.ndss.org/Down-Syndrome/Down-Syndrome-Facts/] and preferred language guide to learn about Down syndrome and how to speak properly about people who have it.
• NDSS recently republished THEIR new and expectant parent guide and brochure, which offers information about Down syndrome as well as their organization.
• The latest NDSS publication is Aging and Down Syndrome: A Health and Well-being Guidebook, which is now available in both English and Spanish versions.
“Down syndrome awareness is very important to us,” said NDSS Goodwill Ambassador Chris Burke, who played Corky on Life Goes On, the first major character in a network television series with Down syndrome. “People with disabilities need a lot of love, support and encouragement to achieve our fullest potential.”
NDSS offers a range of ideas and ways to get involved throughout Down Syndrome Awareness Month at www.ndss.org/DSAM2013.