Self-Advocate Committee Brings Great Perspectives to the Playhouse

Advocates Leading the Way  

Two of GiGi’s Playhouse volunteers and self-advocates, Maya Greengus and Sadler Bell, have set out on a mission to use their voices in our community to advocate for individuals with Down syndrome. In October of 2020, Maya and Sadler suggested starting an advocacy group, and they have since become the Co-Leaders of the first Advocate Committee at GiGi’s Playhouse Madison

 

Maya first became connected with GiGi’s as a teenager when she and her mom would volunteer at GiGi’sNow as a college student, Maya is looking to give back to our community. “I think it’s cool to be an advocate for people with Down syndrome. An advocate is someone who helps others fit into the world, someone who stands up and gets involved to help others.” 

Sadler comes from a family of advocates. Growing up in the South in the 90’s, Sadler remembers attending middle school when individuals with disabilities were segregated into different classrooms. All the kids with disabilities, no matter what they had, they would be in one classroom all together all day long.” His parents strongly advocated for inclusion on behalf of Sadler and he was one of the first in his community to attend general education high school classes with his peers.  

Together, Maya and Sadlerdeveloped the important mission of the Advocate Committee: To collaborate and advocate for inclusiveness and acceptance, making sure all voices are valued so we can make a difference for families in our community.Their top three goals to accomplish this year include talking to volunteers and others in the community to share experiences about Down syndrome, to spread GiGi’s and the Advocate Committee’s missions via social media, and to promote special days and events such as World Down Syndrome Day coming up on March 21st. 

Maya and Sadler recently attended a Board meeting and inspired our directors by sharing their enthusiasm and commitment to their mission and goals. Keep your eye out for many more great things to come from our advocates, Sadler and Maya, as they lead the way in this exciting new venture. 

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