World Down Syndrome Day 2022
World Down Syndrome Day is nearly upon us, and plans are underway for residents, schools, businesses and community groups to celebrate by raising awareness and funds throughout the county. The campaign, led in our region by the charity Down Syndrome Cheshire, is marked annually on 21st March which signifies the uniqueness of the triplication (trisomy) of the 21st chromosome which causes the learning disability.
Down Syndrome Cheshire was originally set up in 2007 by a group of local mums who all had babies with the syndrome and wanted them to thrive and grow to live the life they choose. In the early days the small group met to support one another and share advice and information. Those babies are now teenagers, and the charity has continued to develop to support in the region of 270 families in and around Cheshire by providing information, advice, education advocacy, speech and language therapy, family support, sport, activities and training. The charity has won numerous awards and was most recently named as Charity Group of the Year 2022 at the Community ReAwards. Julie Duff whose son Josh has Down’s syndrome, is Chair of the charity. She encourages families to get in touch for the first time, “We’ve been through that journey, we’ve walked in their shoes, and we can really take a lot of the fear out of some of the emotions that they might be feeling if they have or are expecting a child with Down syndrome.”
Following years of not being able to fundraise due to the pandemic, the charity has big plans for World Down Syndrome Day 2022.
Businesses, community groups and individuals are being asked to fundraise by wearing colourful socks, filling a sock with loose change to donate or by taking part in a sponsored Tri-Challenge to tackle three different sponsored activities to clock up the magic number 21.
Challenge ideas include walking 5k, running 5k and cycling 11k to clock up 21k or doing 5 star jumps, 5 burpees and 11 squats combining a total of 21 moves. Down Syndrome Cheshire CEO Lawrence Caygill explains, “The reason why our fundraising campaign is focused on the number 21 and colourful socks is because people living with Down’s syndrome have three copies of chromosome 21 and chromosomes look like socks!”
All of the money raised will be spent on the charity’s work to support people who have Down’s syndrome in Cheshire.
To find out more about how you can take part in this year’s fundraising campaign and to order your fundraising toolkit, please visit the charity website www.dscheshire.org.uk, Facebook page @DSCheshire, email [email protected] or phone 01606 246171. The charity has a JustGiving page for the Tri-Challenge www.justgiving.com/campaign/Tri21challenge.