Two years ago, I did not have a personal connection to Down syndrome. 2 years ago I sent in an email to see if I could help. I picked up my camera and went to visit the brand new GiGi’s Playhouse-Syracuse to take pictures at their Open Play. I watched, I soaked in this amazing community and I asked questions. Stereotypes were shattered.
I got in my car and wept. I was changed. I know that phrase is used a lot, but I mean it from the most sincere place. I am changed. I have been taught what it means to not give up, to fight and work hard for my goals, I am inspired and challenged weekly by my friends who are leading the way for us all. I have gained more than I could ever give back.
Two years ago I had no personal connection, today I thank God everyday that my world is bigger and filled with friends who I will spend the rest of my life advocating for and learning from. xoxo
-Heather Rodriguez, Volunteer and Board Member for GiGi’s Playhouse- Syracuse