Being a part of a grander community is what makes us tick as humans. The bonds we share with family and friends, the experiences we have both alone and with others, and more importantly, the milestones we reach as the years pass, all make the journey called “life” one to be celebrated each day.
Having a disability should not put a limit to this joy. Disability inclusion is an important topic today – and every day. Taking the time to acknowledge people with disabilities as our peers and our equals and include them in any and all activities is part of our responsibility as a human race.
March 21st is “World Down Syndrome” day, a global awareness day dedicated to honoring those with Down syndrome and remembering how important it is to include them in the same opportunities as their neurotypical peers.
What is Down Syndrome
Down syndrome is a commonly occurring chromosomal condition where a full or partial extra copy of chromosome 21 is present. It occurs in people of all races and economic levels. While there are varied cognitive delays and other characteristics present, most people with Down syndrome lead healthy lives and take part in society the same as everyone else.
Celebrating World Down Syndrome Day
As a team, Cheshire Fitness Zone will be wearing blue and yellow to raise awareness and hope you’ll join us and wear these colors on Wednesday too. The idea is to spur a discussion about your choice of attire and why it’s important to include those with a disability in everyday experiences.
We feel that every day is an opportunity to advocate for inclusion and try to do that by showing children with disabilities that they are really not all that different from any other kids their age.
A special message from Erin Wells, OTR at Cheshire Fitness Zone:
World Down Syndrome Day is Wednesday, March 21st! Please wear blue and yellow in honor of individuals with Down syndrome, and please consider telling one person you encounter next Wednesday that you “know” Henry!
Tell them that you know an awesome little kid named Henry with Down syndrome.
Tell them that DS doesn’t slow him down at all, and that his family loves every little thing about him.
Tell them that he is a tough cookie who gets frequent blood draws, rocks his hospital stays and will undergo heart surgery at least once this spring. He’s strong and his parents’ hero. He’s his big brother’s best friend and favorite light saber battle partner.
Tell them that people with Down syndrome can get their driver’s license, go to college, earn degrees and contribute to society in many meaningful ways.
Remind them that the R word is never, ever acceptable.
Tell them that his family still does all of the things they would have done if Henry was born without an extra 21st chromosome.
Show them pictures of Henry! Tell them his story. It could be someone at work, a good friend, or anyone who comments on your blue and yellow outfit!