Close sidebar

Chapel Haven Schleifer Center is celebrating World Down Syndrome Awareness Day with a week of events, beginning Monday, March 15 and culminating in the international celebration on Sunday, March 21.

Highlights of the week include Dylan’s Zoom Room on Thursday, March 18 at 4 p.m, a Zoom panel discussion with Chapel Haven individuals with Down syndrome who are succeeding in the workplace; and the decoration and hiding of nearly 200 painted stones around Westville with inspirational messages about Down syndrome.

Click Down Syndrome Spirit Week Flyer to see the schedule of events.

Anyone finding a painted stone will see instructions on the back of the rock directing them to Chapel Haven’s Down Syndrome Awareness web page at URL: Chapel Haven Down Syndrome Spirit Week. They can share photos of their find and we’ll share them on our social media and web page!

World Down Syndrome Day (WDSD), 21 March, is a global awareness day which has been officially observed by the United Nations since 2012. The date for WDSD being the 21st day of the 3rd month, was selected to signify the uniqueness of the triplication (trisomy) of the 21st chromosome which causes Down syndrome.

“We have many adults with Down Syndrome living happily in our community,” said Michael Storz, President, Chapel Haven Schleifer Center. “Down syndrome is characterized simply by one extra chromosome. The message we will carry through this week is that people with Down syndrome are no different than you and me – they can lead happy, independent, productive lives and they are doing so in our community every day.”

“Challenging stereotypes about people who live with Down syndrome is a critical part of the work we do,” said Shanon McCormick, executive director of DS-ACT, the Down Syndrome Association of CT. “Chapel Haven students and alumni bring that work to life. We are delighted to join Chapel Haven in raising awareness about what people with Down syndrome can achieve when given the opportunity.”

Some highlights of our special week:

Dylan Kuhnhenn

Thursday, March 18, 4 p.m.: Dylan’s Zoom Room – a presentation by Chapel Haven community member Dylan Kuhnhenn about Down syndrome and employment, featuring stories about Dylan, Sam P., Justin M., Carolyn H., Alison B., Dylan and Nick R. Opening remarks by Shanon McCormick, executive director of DS-ACT, and Chapel Haven President Michael Storz. Click here to register and receive the link to join us!

Friday, March 19, 7 p.m. – DJ Joe Virtual Dance Party on Zoom! Sunday, March 21, 1 p.m. – Join us on Zoom with DJ Joe for a dance celebration! Email to gain the link and dance the evening away!

Chapel Haven Schleifer Center has been celebrating World Down Syndrome Awareness Day for several years and is delighted to spread awareness on behalf of our many adults living happily in our residence and community with Down syndrome.

 Questions? Contact Catherine DeCarlo