Thursday 21st March is World Down Syndrome Day, a chance to raise awareness of what Down Syndrome is, what it means to have Down Syndrome and how people with Down Syndrome play a vital role in our lives and communities.
I feel blessed to have met so many amazing people with Down Syndrome who have brought me joy, made me laugh uncontrollably and just made me forget about any issues or worries I may have been experiencing at the time. It is a pleasure and an honour to spend time in their company, they have so much to offer.
Yet, in some countries people with Down Syndrome are seen as a problem and a burden. In Iceland, a country which for me gets most things right, expectant mothers are told if their baby will be born with Downs. At this point the vast majority of mothers chose to abort their babies which means that Down Syndrome is very close to being ‘eliminated’. The number of similar abortions on the UK is also on the rise
I’m not going to comment on the issue of abortion but I do know that ‘eradicating’ Down Syndrome is wrong and heart breaking. You wonder how balanced the advice from the medical professionals is. I have spoken to the parents of children with Down Syndrome and yes it is incredibly hard work and you’re having to battle a system that is not set up to help you but looks to put barriers in place. But, at the same time these are people with dreams, with potential, with feelings, with talent, with love – so much love.
We have been sent reminders over the last couple of days from New Zealand and today from Holland that the world can be a truly dark place. I want to finish today’s blog with some uplifting video’s to celebrate some amazing people.
So on Thursday rock your socks and celebrate this amazing community of people x