Today is World Down Syndrome Day: Mar 21, also written as 3/21, chosen because people with Down syndrome have 3 copies of the 21st chromosome. Trisomy 21 in medical terms.
The theme, or Call To Action, from Down Syndrome International for this year's WDSD is #MyFriendsMyCommunity: The benefits of inclusive environments for today's children and tomorrow's adults. They ask that you show the world "how persons with Down syndrome live and participate in the community alongside family, friends, peers and the public."
The more that today's children with Down syndrome are fully included in their schools and communities, the more acceptance they will have from their peers when they reach adulthood. The more inclusive settings now ... the more commonplace it will be for their future.
One of the ways individuals with Down syndrome are participating in their communities and with their peers are through higher education programs at colleges and universities across the states. Check out Think College for a list of participating programs in your state.
Students in these programs are taking some academic courses along with their peers, continuing to improve on independent life skills, and gain employment skills; along with this experience comes a full college tuition as well.
Think College provides a great list of resources for how to pay for college. One of those ways includes scholarships; there are several organizations devoted to giving scholarships to students with Down syndrome such as Ruby's Rainbow.
Ruby's Rainbow awards scholarships up to $3000 per selected student. Their 321 Pledge is simple: donate $21, pledge to be kind and considerate to all people, and ask 3 people to do the same. Will 3 people join me in donating $21 to this fantastic scholarship opportunity for people with Down syndrome?
Don't forget to also leave a comment on my 10 years of blogging post (even if the comment is just saying "Happy WDSD!") For every comment I'm donating $1 to LuMind Research Down Syndrome where donations are matched 3:1 for WDSD.