October is Down syndrome awareness month and so, The KDSP along with FUCHSIA magazine brings to you a series of stories celebrating people with Down syndrome in an effort to make others aware of their abilities and accomplishments.
What Is Down Syndrome?
About 1 out of every 700 babies born in the world has Down syndrome. Down syndrome is a genetic condition caused by a full or partial extra copy of chromosome 21. This additional genetic material alters the course of the physical and intellectual development of an individual. A few common physical traits of Down syndrome are low muscle tone, small stature, an upward slant to the eyes, and a single deep crease across the centre of the palm. However, each person with Down syndrome is a unique individual and may possess these characteristics to different degrees, or not at all. Down syndrome can be found in people of all ages, races, religious and economic backgrounds.
The Karachi Down Syndrome Program (KDSP) & Its Key Role In Enabling Individuals & Families
The Karachi Down Syndrome Program (KDSP), a non-profit organization, was launched in March 2014 by a group of concerned parents and passionate individuals who due to limited support and resources available locally, realized a need for a platform for those with Down syndrome. KDSP was formed with the mission to advocate the value, acceptance and inclusion of people with Down syndrome living in Karachi and aims to provide them with the opportunity to lead independent and fulfilling lives.
KDSP understands the needs of individuals with Down syndrome and their loved ones and so from the moment a family with a child with Down syndrome is introduced to us, until they feel empowered, included and equal members of society, KDSP embarks on a journey with them.
Services Provided By The KDSP
Through its 6 areas of service, KDSP serves as a KASHTI (boat) for its Family Network in this beautiful journey. Some of the services we provide include:
1) Khandani Sahara – Family Support
Empowering parents and caregivers through informational, emotional and financial support to become best advocates for their loved one with Down syndrome.
2) Agaahi – Awareness
Raising awareness about Down syndrome through digital media campaigns, distribution of awareness material in schools and hospitals, public events such as the all-inclusive annual carnival and partnering with relevant stakeholders in the community.
3) Sehat- Healthcare
Facilitating individuals with Down syndrome through access to affordable, high quality healthcare services by partnering with leading healthcare organizations.
4) Hunar- Enrichment and Skills Development
Organizing vocational skills training and social, physical and intellectual development programs to cater to children and adults with Down syndrome as well as their families.
5) Taleem – Education
Providing children with Down syndrome access to quality education by inculcating school readiness skills in children with Down syndrome, reinforcing learning through after school programs, developing sustainable partnerships with mainstream schools, hosting training and workshops for teachers, allied professionals and parents and building home-based learning capacities.
6) Ibtidayi Bunyaad- Early Childhood Intervention
Providing a comprehensive program of speech therapy, occupational therapy, and physical therapy for children with Down syndrome to help achieve their developmental milestones in time and pave the way for their independent living.
The Bigger Our Network, The Greater The Impact We Can Make!
Whether you are a mother, father, grandparent, sibling or any other family member of a person with Down syndrome, KDSP is the place to come for information, networking and advocacy in Karachi. The bigger our network, the greater the impact we can make!
For further information on how you can embark on a journey with KDSP please reach out to us through the following channels:
- Email: [email protected]
- Contact: 021-34395377 or 0334-3355377
- Facebook: Karachi Down Syndrome Program
- Instagram: @karachidownsyndromeprogram
- Twitter: @KDSProgram
- Linkedin: Karachi Down Syndrome Program