Ohio Valley Goodwill Industries
Serving Greater Cincinnati

World Down Syndrome Day: End the Stereotypes

On March 21, we recognize World Down Syndrome Day, a global day of awareness to advocate for the rights of people with Down syndrome. The theme of 2024 is “End the Stereotypes,” which encourages supporters around the world to speak up against the stereotypes that keep individuals with Down syndrome from living their best lives.

What Stereotypes Do People with Down Syndrome Face?

Unfortunately, many people with Down syndrome and other intellectual and developmental disabilities still encounter stereotypes and discrimination every day that prevent them from being treated and respected like other people.

All too often, adults with Down syndrome are underestimated, belittled, and excluded from their communities, including workplaces. They might be talked to and treated like children, bullied, and sadly, abused.

No one deserves to be treated this poorly. Fighting misconceptions and stereotypes takes caring people who want to bring awareness to these issues and change them. When we work together, we can see a future where people with Down syndrome are fully included and empowered to live the lives they want.

How Can You Help?

There are many ways you can lend your support and spread awareness for the rights of people with Down syndrome.

One important step is to educate yourself on inclusive and preferred language in the Down syndrome community. The words we use can tear people down — or lift them up. They can reinforce stereotypes — or help eliminate them. As allies to the disability community, we always want to choose kind, caring words that put people first!

Another key area is employment for individuals with disabilities. At Ohio Valley Goodwill, we strive to create meaningful opportunities for people with disabilities through specialized job skills training and employment services. When the individuals we’re proud to serve go on to achieve employment success, they receive more than a paycheck — they also enjoy a greater sense of independence and inclusion. If you’re an employer, please talk to us to learn more about the benefits of hiring individuals with disabilities!

For individuals seeking life enrichment opportunities, Ohio Valley Goodwill is proud to offer a community-based, award-winning social integration program called the Center for Advocacy, Recreation and Education (CARE). The CARE program offers an array of opportunities for individuals to become fully involved and connected with their communities as well as building personal relationships. CARE participants enjoy a wide variety of community outings, entertainment, and activities that interest them, including the opportunity to volunteer to help others in the Greater Cincinnati community!

Give Back with Goodwill

Did you know? You can contribute to Goodwill’s mission simply by shopping in our stores or donating your gently-used items. Your support goes a long way in fueling these vital and meaningful programs for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities like Down syndrome.
Getting started is as easy as finding your nearest Cincinnati Goodwill location. Thank you for standing up against stereotypes and supporting individuals with disabilities!