The best way to promote awareness of Down syndrome is for people with Down syndrome to share their own stories in their own words. 

We want to give you a platform to share your story with our global supporters both via our website and on social media. So, if you have a story that you would like to share with the world, please click on the "Share your story" button below. Be sure to include a photo or short video to help capture attention.


We can't promise to share all stories but we will share as many as we can. You can find latest stories below and on DSi social media pages:

Your stories


"Hi, my name is Ahren. I am 35 years old and live at home with my mom and dad. I live on Long Island, NY and am enrolled in a Self-direction program. There are 4 friends who alternate and come over to work with me on educational things, exercise, games, outings and fellowship. It's really great. I also enjoy playing sled hockey. I am on the LI Rough Riders Sled Hockey team. My family is very important to me. I have three married siblings and look forward to their visits and my visits to them. My mom and dad enjoy having me around so much they started GLADS (Generating Learning and Appreciation for Down Syndrome). They are trying to spread the news that having a child with Down Syndrome is wonderful. They want to encourage families to keep their babies. They also financially sponsor adoptions of Down Syndrome babies/children."


"My son Guilherme is a young man who is 26 year old. He is the best person I know in all aspects, as a son, as a professional, as a friend, as a sportsman, as an actor, really a serendipity in our lives, mine, my wife, his sister, family and friends. I must celebrate its existence every day of my life. Before COVID-19 he was working in an Italian restaurant and was working on a new play. We live in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Opportunities, autonomy, respect and inclusion are very important things for him." Eduardo (Guilherme's father)


"This is my awesome son Nicholas. He always makes us so proud of him. He makes the world sparkle because he is very caring towards the elderly, is very polite and he makes them smile. He is also our star as you can see he is a bit of an actor and VERY into the Avengers." - Jane (Nicholas' mum)


"I am Gabrieal C Francis. I am 16yrs old. I am from Thrissur, Kerala. I am a student in 9th standard. I am a Downsyndrome boy. I am a classical dancer, keyboardist, artist." You can watch Gabrieal's video "Let's Dance" on YouTube.


"Agatha, age 9, is our third born child. We live in Mwanza in North-Western Tanzania. Agatha goes to a private nursery school. She loves music and singing though she has no speech and there is no speech therapy where we live. She loves pets like dogs, goats and chickens. She is very joyful and very happy." - Modester (Agatha's mum)


"Daniele was 16 at the beginning of October, we live in Hertfordshire and Dan is in his final year of Secondary School, moving onto college in September. My family and friends are very important to me." - Michele (Daniele's mum)


Jacob is a swimming sensation! Jacob attended Swim Camp at his local University. His dad, Mike, was unsure about sending him but Coach Crocker assured the family that Jacob would be "just fine". That decision changed their lives!

Jacob was a co-captain on the Gulf Shores High School swim team. He received the Alabama High School Sports Magazine's Humanitarian Award. He also was recommended for the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame by then Mayor David L. Bodenharner, who said, "As the first handicapped swimmer in the history of the Alabama High School Athletic Swim and Dive Championship to make the finals, Jacob proved to himself and his teammates that he has the determination and the ability to compete. He has taken every opportunity at school, where he was voted most popular by his peers. Jacob has excelled in his life through hard work, determination and a "can do" attitude. Jacob is an impressive young man."

Jacob has gone on to achieve gold medals for swimming and achieved not one but TWO World Records for 800m Freestyle and 1,500m Freestyle with the Down Syndrome International Swimming Organisation.


"Bubbly Gao (Gabotse) has lived happily with Down syndrome with the immense support of mother and father, Marina and Peter. He and his parents wish for an inclusive approach to care provision. With this they envision an independent life enriched with life skills and fluent speech ability for others like Gao from a young age. Education and support are key for parents and carers." - Marina (Gao's mother)


"As parents we knew nothing about Down syndrome - this was all new to us. We frantically spent the early days searching the internet for any mention of it.. wiping away tears as the realisation was beginning to sink in.. our son had Down syndrome. We weren’t crying because of the diagnosis - for that was never a problem we were upset because
we were bombarded with outdated images & terminology.. nothing seemed remotely positive! That’s when we knew we had to find other parents in the same situation and join groups to get a better clearer picture of what the future had in store... that’s when it all changed and life with Wilson didn’t seem quite so daunting. We quickly realised that Wilson was nothing like those out dated images & his life was to be miles away from the scare stories we had read in books & on the internet." - Sara (Wilson's mum)

Wilson has a Facebook page - Wilson pretty fly for a small guy - which aims to change people’s perceptions and help end discrimination. Wilson and his family are currently raising funds for selected charities by selling gorgeous cherub Christmas cards through his Etsy shop.



"Jewel is my last born daughter. Just like her name suggests she is the most resilient gem in my brood. Owing to her condition, her milestones have been delayed and because of this she has been involved in quite a number of accidents in and around the house. We have been in and out of hospital uncountable times with my precious gem. The surprising thing about Jewel is her ability to weather these health-related setbacks so well that on all these occasions she bounces back to her normal self very fast once intervention is meted. Her passion for dancing and singing lights up our world with joy and laughter. If Jewel gets a stable supportive team she can make a very good ballerina in future." - Josephine (Jewel's mum)


"Our son Lucas is 5 years old. He loves school, friends, family and dressing up for Halloween." - Alexandra (Lucas' mum)

Luis Romeo

"I have a brother with Down Syndrome, Luis Romeo. He's the sweetest and I want to honor him on this World Children's Day. He left us when he was just 6 years old. That was 9 years ago. I miss him so much. In honor of him, I established my own advocacy campaign entitled "Don't Limit Me: A Down Syndrome Awareness and Education Campaign" which aims to promote inclusion and education among children with Down syndrome. Along with some volunteers and private sectors, we have managed to launch a School Learning Resource Room inside the Bacolod City Special Education Center in the Philippines. I was 18 when I spearheaded it. Knowing my purpose in life is one of the most important things to me. And being able to carry on the drive to "lift up the Down" is something that I will forever cherish - all for a sibling's love." - Sherizze (Luis's sister)


"My daughter Henrietta has just turned two. She is thriving! She loves exploring, climbing and is very inquisitive. She can walk, communicate through Makaton and gives the best hugs ever!" - Lauren (Henrietta's mum)


"I have a son who is 17 and has Down syndrome, his name is Alfredo. My husband and I funded a non profit organization which serves individuals with disabilities in our country. I love to spend time with these amazing people. We live in Guatemala which is located in Central America and is a developing country, so ignorance about Down syndrome is way too much. We are learning of how other countries have grown in inclusion. Alfredo's life inspired me in many ways. He has blessed thousands of people in our country." - Irene (Alfredo's mum and founder of Down Guatemala)

For the children of Mali

"I would like to celebrate all of the children with Down syndrome in Mali. Even if the state does not want to accompany me I will continue to fight for all "my children of love". I would love to have support to raise awareness and inform Malian society about Down syndrome, to have an adequate structure for the care of all children with Down's syndrome in Mali." - Diana (Présidente de lAssociation malienne de la trisomie 21)


"Emily is our daughter. She is 8 years old and has 5 older brothers. We all live in Jersey, in the Channel Islands. Emily loves singing, dancing and she absolutely loves cooking." - Angela (Emily's mum)



"I'm a mother of 3 children, Essien is my oldest son who is 15 years and has Down syndrome. He is incredible, he is very sociable and caring. He loves doing all family activities especially with friends. He is very independent." - Marija Laura (Essien's mum)


"We live in a village in Pakistan. There is no special school for children with additional needs. Fatima is very active. She got third place in her mainstream school. I feel proud of her." - Jia (Fatima's mum)


"Jack is 13 months old and he spent the first 5 months in hospital due to multiple health issues. He is a little fighter and has brought us so much joy to our lives." - Laura (Jack's mum)


"This is Shari, a beautiful 14 year old girl who has Down syndrome and autism. She goes to a special school in Essex, UK and is the pride and joy of her parents. Because of her an innovative set of resources were invented to enable parents of children with special educational needs to empower their children and raise aspirations in the special needs community. Her parents raise funds and distribute the materials free of cost to eligible parents." - Andrea (a family friend and creator of Pocket Learner)


"When Willi was born they told us, he would not be able to learn to walk or communicate or anything. He was very sick. Now he is 13 years old. Sure, there are many things he did not learn, for example to speak. But we learnt a lot - We don't love people for what they are able to do or not. We love Willi just like he is! Wonderful!" - Birte (Willi's mum)


"I am Dhahi, 16 years old from Dubai in United Arab Emirates. I am lucky to be in mainstream school in year 9, I love going to school and having friends. I love learning new things. I like computer, Karting and swimming. I love my family. I love socializing and helping people."


"I believe that all children have a Right to be educated and to have the opportunity to live a fulfilled life. Inclusion works and we must all advocate for kids to be given equal opportunities. We hope that we can change the lives of our kids in a positive way by changing society and creating acceptance and understanding." - Lisa Ghany, Honorary Board Member of the DSFN



"My sweet Finn... God bless him on his First Holy Communion. Finn is ways smiling and he loves the beach!" - Maureen (Finn's mum)


"My daughter, Lea, and I, we like sports. In the winter we ski and the rest of the year we cycle everywhere we have to go if possible. This makes easily 20 Miles a day. We think it is good fun and it helps to stay healthy." - Ute (Lea's mum)

María José

"We live in Santa Marta in Colombia. When our first daughter, María José, was born with Down syndrome my husband and I made the decision to work for the inclusion of people with Down syndrome in our community. We work as a family to raise awareness of the rights of people with Down syndrome. I have written about our experience in my blog - "Social exclusion in Santa Marta"." - María Moscote (María José's mother)


"Scott is My Son and is 11 years old. He is a mischievous little Man. We are from Ireland. It is important to me that people see Scott for who he is a Beautiful Little Boy and not just someone with a Disability. He is so funny and always entertaining people." - Angela (Scott's mum)


"I am Gilly. I am 21 years old. I live near San Francisco, California, USA. My favorite thing to do is to play with my niece, Kaycee and my nephews, Charlie and Cameron. I love them and they love me."


"My name is Donovan. I am 15 years old. I make the world a better place with my something extra by spreading laughter. I make people laugh with the funny things I say. They're always spot on. If I make you laugh, then you're not sad anymore. Give me time, I will shine."


"My name is Brady McCarthy. I am 18 years old. I am graduating with a high school diploma in June. I want to be an actor or model. I make short films with my brother and sister. I have taken many film classes at school. In high school, I am in theater, Unified Basketball, and I am Captain of our Wrestling Team. I have my own website and I have my own YouTube channel and Instagram page. In my town, I am on a community committee where I promote inclusion in our town as an EPIC Ambassador."



"I am Pranay Burde, I'm 32 years old and I have Down syndrome. In 2007 (aged 19) I joined Hotel “The Leela”, Mumbai. I worked for thirteen years there. I lost my job this year due to lockdown. Now I make Pressed Flower Arts. I make decorative wall hangings, table mats out of national materials like flowers, flower petals to sell and earn a livelihood.

I am a part of the group of parents and teachers that approaches various establishments advocating with officials for open employment of persons with intellectual disabilities. I champion the cause of inclusion of persons with intellectual disabilities through self-advocacy. I, by my speeches, have been inspiring hundreds of young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities at forums like the World Congress. I am an active and committed member of SAFI. I am a regular speaker on Self Advocacy at the National and Regional Parents meets held across India and training programmes of Self Advocates and their mentors. I am regular participant in numbers of Self Advocacy training programmes as a trainer.

My journey has been unique and commendable. My skills and efficiency have won me admirers everywhere and my hard work has resulted in numerous accolades Nationally and Internationally, including 'National Award 2014 and 2017, World Down Syndrome Day Award 2014, and Divyang Gaurav Puraskar 2017, among others."


"Hi: I'm 24 years old. I live in the USA. I am a twin. My twin brother works at Boeing. I also have a sister. I just started a company with my sister. I am the CEO of a company called All Abilities Art - you can find my shop on Etsy. I am an intern with international students at my local university and I also volunteer at a living history museum and at a nature center. I'm kinda stuck at home right now because of Covid 19. but I love music and entertainment and going out to eat. I also love fashion and modeling. I am on the Self Advocacy Resource Council of the National Down Syndrome Society in the USA."


Nikola is 30 and lives in Macedonia.

"Nikola is my brother and he loves listening to and playing the guitar. Recently he has taken up gardening too, which can be a lovely hobby for people with Down syndrome, especially in the long months of lockdown." - Rosica (Nikola's sister)


Grace is 16 and lives in the Untied States. Grace is passionate about cooking. Her YouTube channel "Cheffing with Grace" has been her labor of love for the past four years.

Grace also cooks with other people who have disabilities and has started a Facebook group called “the Disability Chef” to encourage everyone to eat healthily through culinary independence. Grace loves every moment and brings such joy to cooking. Graces hobbies are riding bikes and skiing.

Grace's dad says, "Individuals with Down syndrome can do go anywhere their typical peers go, they just go the scenic route to get there."

Grace's motto is “Everyone can cook”!


Grant is 39 and lives in Pueblo Colorado. 

"I work at Top Notch Auto every Tuesday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. I help the salesmen by meeting with customers and show them car, truck, trailers that are for sale. When we get a sale, I take the numbers off the windshields and wash all the windows on the cars and help put the temporary license tags on the cars. I help in the office and shred lots of papers, I make sure the floors, tables and desks are clean and I make coffee. I talk with customers while they are waiting for all the paperwork to get done. I love seeing customers get new cars and always tell them congratulations! I also go to my mom's office every other Friday and clean the office. I water all the plants, vacuum, clean the tables and bathroom. In the summer I have my own lawn mowing business and mow anywhere from 3 lawns a weeks to 6 lawns a week. I love God, family, friends and I love my job. And I love the Denver Broncos win or lose they are the best!"


Chaya and Angkor

After her 6th child, Angkor, was unexpectedly born with Down syndrome, Chaya undertook an incredible journey taking her from Alaska to Israel so she could do right by her child. Along the way she adopted another 3 children with Down syndrome. Now she and her family have become advocates for and protectors of children with special needs. You can hear their story here: Love Syndrome Revisited

Aleksandra, Sebastian and Zuzanka

Aleksandra and Sebastian, from Poland, are actors, models and athletes in the Special Olympics. Along with 6 year old Zuzanka they enjoy taking part in reenactment events, travelling back in time. 

"How do you find Mr Darcy? I think he is a handsome man. What about pretty, charming Ola (as if she was a character from "Sense and Sensibiity")? A little flibbertygibbet - Zuzanka cheers up all her company. The charming, sensitive, strong - just exceptional people."

Here they create "The Z Family" in Andrzej Mikiciak's fairy tale from 1815, the times of "Pride and Prejudice". All the costumes are historical reconstructions from the beginning of XIX century, created according to the patterns of the era. Aren't they beautiful!


Saideep is 13 years old and lives in Delhi, India. Saideep is trying to create his own story in the discussion on Down syndrome. He absolutely loves to paint, and he is learning how to express himself in the best way possible through the medium of art. He is currently enjoying his sketching lessons and has been painting under guidance. His family say, "He is on his journey, learning new things everyday and experiencing different adventures, and it is our pleasure to watch him enjoy various activities. "

You can follow Saideep and see more of his work on his Instagram page


Nada from Tunisia has been volunteering with the Red Crescent alongside her aunt. She has been creating posters and videos to raise awareness of Coronavirus and how to keep safe, and she has been sorting donations and preparing baskets for families in need.


My daughter Oana is 40 years old. We live in Romania. Oana is full of optimism and she has so much potential. She likes to dance, to do sports, to recite. She's friendly and has many friends on Facebook. Following her journey through the maze of life has taught me many valuable lessons about perseverance and maintaining a positive attitude despite facing incredible challenges. Thank you for the opportunity to share Oana's story - told by Oana's mother, Floreta.