World Down Syndrome Day Rocks!

3/21 marks World Down Syndrome Day every year! The triplicate of the 21st chromosome (3/21) defines Down syndrome. This year, our Playhouse packed in so many moments of advocacy and celebration in one week. 2024 World Down Syndrome Day rocked!

Monday kicked off with the filming of INsight on 21Alive with Tony Betton Jr. Bethany was thrilled to meet someone she watches on tv regularly. After advocating on the segment, Bethany returned to her GiGi U classroom with more confidence and better articulation than she has ever had! While in the studio, 21Alive filmed an interview for use on the evening show.

Tuesday came with more of the interview Bethany and our Executive Director recorded on Monday being shown.

Wednesday, Jenny went with our Executive Director to Cedar Canyon Elementary to read to the preschool class and talk about celebrating differences. Jenny read to the students and loved being around children, a career path that she would love to take. As an added bonus, Jenny was able to reconnect with her Kindergarten teacher!

Thursday was World Down Syndrome Day and it was packed with purpose and fun! Our Executive Director opened the Playhouse at 4:30am to do live interviews with 21Alive! During the 7 o’clock hour, Playhouse participant, Nolan, joined her. Our 2024 Gala co-hosts, Pat and Emily, also aired an interview during the morning hours on WANE 15! Our Executive Director was also invited to Kiddie Academy Fort Wayne to read a story and speak about celebrating our differences with their students. The night ended with an incredible World Down Syndrome Day Carnival with DSANI where more than 225 individuals came and celebrated with us!

Friday, Bethany and our Executive Director headed to East Noble Middle School for the first time to speak about our organization and say thank you to the staff and students for raising $400 through their crazy socks fundraiser. At the Playhouse, our participant, Izzy, stopped by to deliver his school’s donation of $289.37 from their fundraiser!

Saturday, we wrapped up our week with a very successful Flapjack Fundraiser at Applebee’s on Lima Rd. Nine GiGi University students and graduates worked on career skills as the greeter, seaters, servers, and bussers during a very busy breakfast service. The event raised over $1000! Then, our Cheer Gems brought spirit, confidence, and so much joy to the Purdue Fort Wayne Men’s Volleyball game on Saturday night. This year, World Down Syndrome Day rocked not on on 3/21, but all week long!

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