We supported the establishment of a Down syndrome organisation in Rwanda, and are now helping them to develop their activities and grow as an organisation.


The challenge

In Rwanda people with Down syndrome and their families are often isolated and lack important information about key issues affecting their lives. They struggle to participate in society due to negative attitudes and have limited access to basic healthcare and education.

They need support to advocate for their rights and work towards a more inclusive society.


What we are doing

Establishing an organisation to improve the lives of people with Down syndrome in Rwanda.

We are supporting the Rwanda Down Syndrome Organisation (RDSO), a new organisation that is working to support and advocate for people with Down syndrome and their families. Their activities include:

  • Reaching out to over 400 people with Down syndrome;
  • Running a drop-in service providing information and support;
  • Establishing a parent support group for people to share experiences;
  • Raising awareness of Down syndrome on the radio and TV;
  • Organising World Down Syndrome Day events;
  • Lobbying politicians and other policymakers.

We provide financial support, help with strategic planning and technical training to develop RDSO's capacity as an organisation.


Long term impact

A strong organisation like RDSO can provide people with Down syndrome and their families with the information and support they need. It can begin to change attitudes and raise awareness of Down syndrome in the general public, making for a more inclusive society.

RDSO's advocacy and lobbying is important to change the laws and policies in Rwanda, to make systems such as education and health more inclusive of people with Down syndrome.