World Down Syndrome Day
2:00 to 4:30 pm, Friday, March 20th
Children’s Hospital Colorado Atrium
Every year on March 21, the Global Down Syndrome Foundation organizes a World Down Syndrome Day celebration at Children’s Hospital Colorado in conjunction with the Linda Crnic Institute for Down Syndrome and the Anna and John J. Sie Center for Down Syndrome. The hospital’s main atrium is turned into center stage, with music, food, giveaways and performances.
Each year features updates on Global, research at the Crnic Institute, medical care at the Sie Center, the presentation of the Global Down Syndrome Foundation Community Leadership Awards, and performances. Highlights have included football players and cheerleaders from Global’s Dare to Play Football and Dare to Cheer Camps, and dancers from the Be Beautiful Be Yourself Dance Class.
Receiving the Global Down Syndrome Foundation Community Leadership Award in 2015 were Connor Long and Anna M. Sie.
Down syndrome awareness has been celebrated on March 21 around the world by various Down syndrome organizations. March 21 (3/21) is a representation or a symbol of the genetic make-up of Down syndrome – three copies of chromosome 21 instead of two.
The idea of a World Down Syndrome Day began when Dr. Balbir Singh in Singapore publically called for a day in which people with Down syndrome would be celebrated and advocated. Soon thereafter, Stylianos E. Antonarakis, a renowned scientist and Down syndrome researcher, formally proposed March 21 as World Down Syndrome Day to Down Syndrome International. With events organized by the Sikh Community, Down Syndrome International, and local community groups, the first World Down Syndrome Day was officially launched in Singapore on March 21, 2006. Hundreds of organizations worldwide now celebrate World Down Syndrome Day on March 21 each year.