Every life is special and more often than not a person with a disability is excluded from events or treated differently because of stereotypes.

On March 21 it is time to End The Stereotypes which is this year’s theme for World Down Syndrome Day.

Down syndrome (or Trisomy 21) is a naturally occurring chromosomal arrangement that has always been a part of the human condition. The sole characteristic shared by all people with Down syndrome is the presence of extra genetic material associated with the 21st chromosome.

Rock Your Socks
Rock Your Socks

This happens because of an error during cell division when the egg and sperm first meet. The effects of that extra genetic material vary greatly from individual to individual.

Around 1 in every 800 babies will be born with Down syndrome and there is no known cause.

People with Down syndrome have an inherent right to be accepted and included as valued and equal members of the community.

The way to show support on March 21 is choose some socks that are going to get noticed and mismatch them. Wearing mismatched socks or your craziest and most colourful socks, whatever takes your fancy, will start a conversation.

So, when people ask you about your socks, you can tell them, “I’m wearing them to raise awareness of Down syndrome”. And then you can tell them everything you want them to know about Down syndrome.

People are all different. Each person with Down syndrome is different. Each person with an intellectual disability is different.

They each have their own individual identity, interests, likes and dislikes, gifts and talents, just like everyone else. Having Down syndrome or an intellectual disability is just one part of who they are.

World Down Syndrome Day is to raise awareness to End The Stereotypes as people with Down syndrome are people and deserve to be treated like people.

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