With Us Not For Us – The Powerful Theme Of World Down Syndrome Day 2023


The Down syndrome community of Long Island is joining the world in the celebration of World Down Syndrome Day. Alexander’s Angels Youth/Self-Advocate Group is organizing an event at the Macy’s Court of Roosevelt Field on March 18, 2023, from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. that will highlight the abilities of individuals with Down syndrome.
A human rights-based approach views people with disabilities as having the right to be treated fairly and have the same opportunities as everyone else, working “With” others to improve their lives. To that end, the Group that includes Self-Advocates of all ages and typical youngsters from middle and high-school, aims to present to those attending a full-range of abilities.
People with Down syndrome often have their supporters’ doing things “For” them, not “With” them. That has not been the case of Alexander’s Angels, an organization of which, since its inception in 2007, individuals with Down syndrome can say does everything With Us Not For Us. That became even more obvious in 2016 with the establishment of the Youth/Self-Advocate Group who immediately took the helm of the very symbolic upcoming celebration.
Although the 2020 event was canceled due to the pandemic, and a virtual event was held in 2021, last year’s return to a live event was well attended. This year’s activities include, among others, a DJ, strolling characters, opportunity to get engaged in a craft, a very energetic group of Zumba performers (with Down syndrome), an informal DOWNrightART exhibition (artists with Down syndrome), raffles and more.
World Down Syndrome Day (WDSD), March 21st, is a global awareness day officially observed by the United Nations since 2012. Alexander’s Angels, an all-volunteer 501(c)(3) organization based in Jericho founded by the family and friends of Alexander Gomez-Nieto who has Down syndrome, has organized locally through the years a WDSD celebration. WDSD is, indeed, a very symbolic date as Down syndrome occurs when there are three rather than two copies of the 21st chromosome.
—Submitted by Alexander’s Angels, Inc.

Leave a Reply