Everyone communicates differently

Everyone communicates differently

For International Day of Sign Languages (Friday 23 September) the global Down syndrome community stands with the World Federation of the Deaf in our dream of building inclusive communities for all.

Sign language is a form of Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC). AAC helps people who don’t speak with their mouths to communicate.

Many people with Down syndrome will experience speech and language difficulties. This can lead to impaired communication skills. But there are many ways besides speech that we use to communicate, including AAC.

Watch our video to learn about the ways we communicate and how to make sure everyone is included:


Listen Include Respect.

Down Syndrome International is working together with Inclusion International on a project called Listen Include Respect.

Listen Include Respect is about including people with intellectual disabilities in the work of organisations.

One of the most important considerations is communication. Organisations must communicate in a way that is easy to understand.

But also, some people will need to use alternative types of communication to take part.

Inclusive communities must adapt so that everyone can communicate in the way that works for them.

Get informed.

Please take time to learn how to communicate in an inclusive way and encourage your friends and colleagues to do the same.

The Listen Include Respect “Communication” guidelines include information about:

  • Alternative types of communication (AAC);
  • Respectful communication;
  • Websites;
  • Social media;
  • Emails.


Share your message.

If you have a message about inclusive communication that you would like to share with the world, you can complete our form by clicking the link below. Please include a photo or you can send a video message.