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Down Syndrome International
0044 (0) 1395 493108

Stories

The best way to promote awareness of Down syndrome is for people with Down syndrome to share their own stories in their own words.

So here goes…

If you have a story that you would like to share with the world, please click on the “Share your story” button below.

SHARE YOUR STORY
UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

Chaica

Chaica is 24-year-old Emirati graduate of Sharjah English School and continued her studies in art at the International School of Arts and Sciences in Dubai.

She is fully focused on spreading awareness on inclusion, with representative roles at top national and international organizations. She is the Emirates Down Syndrome Association Representative at Down Syndrome International, Ambassador of Inclusion MENA at Inclusion International, Ambassador of Inclusion at Manzil Center in Sharjah, and a UAE Special Olympics Athlete & Leader.

In Addition, she is fully focused on her martial arts, having attained a black belt from Shotokan Japanese Sports Center. She trains and competes in nine different martial arts with her main interests being Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and karate. Chaica has participated in several competitions internationally, and has won 2 championships in Egypt and Spain. Chaica also participated as a Torch Runner during the Law Enforcement Torch Run at the World Games, and gave a speech at the Opening Ceremony of the Special Olympics that was held in Abu Dhabi, UAE. 

With hard work and dedication, Chaica aims to keep spreading inclusion in any way possible, and to represent what’s possible for people with down syndrome.

UNITED STATES

Courtney

My name is Courtney. I am very active with my family, my school and in my community. I am involved at Greater Love Missionary Baptist Church , I am in the Choctaw High School JROTC, Student Council and Key Club. I was part of the cheer-ablity team The Shining Starz for 5 years. We won the National Championship in 2020.

I’m also an advocate for African American girls and women through Girl Trek, which is the largest non-profit geared toward promoting a healthily lifestyle for African American girls and women. I am part of the Down Syndrome Association of Central Oklahoma and the Global Down Syndrome Foundation.

My words may be hard for some to understand, but my actions by stepping up and taking chances are loud and proud! If I’m not understood then, I have the love and support of a family so I can be heard!

I am Courtney and I am here, don’t dis my abilities! BTW, I put my flyer together, with a little help from my family.

INDONESIA

Morgan

My name is Morgan. I am Indonesian, 22 years old. I speak 3 languages: Indonesian, French and English.

During the COVID-19 pandemic I co-wrote guidelines on Covid-19 in simple language. My mum and I have been running weekly classes with me as her class assistant. I had 3 months training and if you know my mum you would believe that it was not an easy training that she gave me! But now I can be proud of my self because I get paid by the organization for what I do in class. 

My story as self-advocate was featured and published in October 2020 in a book called Narrative Power Collective Action Part 2. I am the only human rights activist with an intellectual disability featured in the book with other 29 social activists from all over the world.  

PERU

Jaime

My name is Jaime. I live with my parents.

I have 2 jobs, I am an actor in the play Hamlet by William Shakespeare directed by Chela De Ferrari at the Teatro La Plaza and I support in the area of Citizenship and rights.

I am proud to be Self-Advocate because I defend the rights of People with Disabilities as the article 24 education and participation in sport, culture and free time. I have been able to travel to England, Bolivia, Colombia, London, Pennsylvania.

My biggest challenge was surfing as I was afraid of the sea, and traveling alone abroad to learn the Hamlet scripts.

COSTA RICA

Juan

My name is Juan . I am 37 years old. I live in Costa Rica. I am receive training work in the Fundaciòn El Futuro es de Todos. I am most proud to have a wonderful family and to learn a lot of things that help me to be a independent person and work and to get marriage that is my biggest challenge.

UNITED KINGDOM

Kate

My name is Kate. I would like to share one of my memories with you. Back in 2012 I was a member of the Greater London Special Olympic Swimming team. That year the Great Britain 10K race was being held in London and one of their chosen charities was the Special Olympics. I was asked to represent the Special Olympics and join the celebrities on board an open topped London bus which was at the start of the race in Picadilly. Before the race I was invited to have breakfast at the Ritz hotel with Deputy Mayor of Westminster who was due to start the race. What an exciting and memorable day that was.

BANGLADESH

Fahim

Hi, My name is Fahim Hasan. I’m from Bangladesh. I’m a self advocate of Down Syndrome Society of Bangladesh.
In this time of the pandemic keeping good health and a cheerful mind has been my biggest challenge. So to keep myself busy I started doing several things. My new found love for learning about computers, typing, surfing the web helped me to stay positive and healthy. Also I’ve started to pet two pigeons.
More than anything I’m grateful to the Almighty Allah for keeping me and my beloved ones safe and healthy.

BRAZIL

José

I am José Carlos. I am 22 years old, single, I live with my parents Eduardo and Marcia Póvoa in the West Zone of the Municipality of Rio de Janeiro, BRAZIL.
I love imitating Michael Jackson. My stage name is José Jackson Down.

IRELAND

Eileen

My name Is Eileen Dunne. I come from Cavan in Ireland.
I work two jobs in Tesco and a hair salon.
I was proud work to do a project called “Who am I” for Down Syndrome Ireland in March 2018. I give a speech on World Down Syndrome Day and was on the RTÉ news.
My biggest challenge was public speaking. I gave a speech in Trinidad to practise my speech.

GUATEMALA

Alfredo

“I have a son who is 17 and has Down syndrome, his name is Alfredo. My husband and I funded a non profit organization which serves individuals with disabilities in our country. I love to spend time with these amazing people. We live in Guatemala which is located in Central America and is a developing country, so ignorance about Down syndrome is way too much. We are learning of how other countries have grown in inclusion. Alfredo’s life inspired me in many ways. He has blessed thousands of people in our country.” – Irene (Alfredo’s mum and founder of Down Guatemala)

SOUTH AFRICA

Jordana-Jade

“I am a 20 year old lady. I live with my parents Roger and Monica. I have an older sister Casey and a brother Kal.
On Mondays and Fridays I go to a vocational high school. On Tuesdays and Thursdays I work at the butchery up the road from my house where I measure, weigh and pack spices.
I love singing and dancing. I do hip hop on Fridays. I enjoy being on stage and love to make speeches.
I am a top chef and make my family supper every Friday. People love my chicken dishes and I’m now baking biscuits as well.
What’s important to me is to be a nice person and treat people well. “

UNITED STATES

Jacob

Jacob is a swimming sensation! Jacob attended Swim Camp at his local University. His dad, Mike, was unsure about sending him but Coach Crocker assured the family that Jacob would be “just fine”. That decision changed their lives!
Jacob was a co-captain on the Gulf Shores High School swim team. He received the Alabama High School Sports Magazine’s Humanitarian Award. He also was recommended for the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame by then Mayor David L. Bodenharner, who said, “As the first handicapped swimmer in the history of the Alabama High School Athletic Swim and Dive Championship to make the finals, Jacob proved to himself and his teammates that he has the determination and the ability to compete. He has taken every opportunity at school, where he was voted most popular by his peers. Jacob has excelled in his life through hard work, determination and a “can do” attitude. Jacob is an impressive young man.”
Jacob has gone on to achieve gold medals for swimming and achieved not one but TWO World Records for 800m Freestyle and 1,500m Freestyle with the Down Syndrome International Swimming Organisation.

IRELAND

Scott

“Scott is My Son and is 11 years old. He is a mischievous little Man. We are from Ireland. It is important to me that people see Scott for who he is a Beautiful Little Boy and not just someone with a Disability. He is so funny and always entertaining people.” – Angela (Scott’s mum)

INDONESIA

Adit

Adit is 18 years old. He has overcome many challenges. He was late to walk and talk and when Adit was finally able to speak, it was very hard to understand what he was saying. 

Beating a drum with a stick was one of the therapies that helped Adit. He has been doing this since the age of 3, and by the age of 12 he began to show great improvement and interest in his training. Adit’s skill continues to grow to such an extent that he has had several opportunities to perform on national television. Now his dream is to become a professional drummer known throughout the world.

INDIA

Pranay

“I am Pranay Burde, I’m 32 years old and I have Down syndrome. In 2007 (aged 19) I joined Hotel “The Leela”, Mumbai. I worked for thirteen years there. I lost my job due to lockdown. Now I make Pressed Flower Arts. I make decorative wall hangings, table mats out of national materials like flowers, flower petals to sell and earn a livelihood.
I am a part of the group of parents and teachers that approaches various establishments advocating with officials for open employment of persons with intellectual disabilities. I champion the cause of inclusion of persons with intellectual disabilities through self-advocacy.
My journey has been unique and commendable. My skills and efficiency have won me admirers everywhere and my hard work has resulted in numerous accolades Nationally and Internationally, including ‘National Award 2014 and 2017, World Down Syndrome Day Award 2014, and Divyang Gaurav Puraskar 2017, among others.”

UNITED STATES

Trinity

“I want to take the time to introduce to you Cadet Trinity D. R•••, the 1st student with Down Syndrome to enroll in the NJROTC program at Royal Palm Beach Community High School’s history. She’s letting the Down syndrome community know if she can do it, so can you!!” – Daniel (Trinity’s father)

If you have a story that you would like to share with the world, please click on the “Share your story” button below.

SHARE YOUR STORY