with Executive Director David Tolleson
The month of October was designated as Down syndrome Awareness Month in 1984 by President Ronald Reagan. We’ve seen a lot of changes since then – the average life expectancy of individuals with Down syndrome growing from 25 to 60; inclusive education practices increasing; and self-advocates living independently and working in their communities. Many families use October as a time to bring awareness to their classrooms and communities. At the NDSC we promote Down syndrome awareness every day!
The mission of the National Down Syndrome Congress is to provide information, advocacy and support concerning all aspects of life for individuals with Down syndrome.
Many people view the NDSC as “the convention people”, and it’s true, we have an amazing annual convention – the largest of its kind in the world. However, we also have a staff and board with a vast knowledge base, as well as a Professional Advisory Council that we turn to when we need special expertise. Whether you are a parent experiencing a diagnosis or wishing to make a difference on legislative policy; an adult sibling who has questions regarding guardianship and alternatives; or, a self-advocate wanting to discuss life options – we are here to help you every step of the way. We have a robust website and offer parent webinars and other resources. We provide support and materials to affiliate organizations and medical professionals, so they can help spread awareness and provide accurate and up-to-date information. We are the oldest national Down syndrome organization in the country, well known for reaching out to others and for helping anyone – member or not – because it’s the right thing to do, every month of every year.