March Into Advocacy | Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month

March is a significant month for our disabled friends, family, and neighbors. Not only will this year mark the 34th anniversary of Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month (March, 1987), but it will also be the 9th ever officially observed World Down Syndrome Day (March, 21st).

Join us in celebrating the lives of those with down syndrome and other developmental disabilities in an effort to further advocate for their rights, inclusion and welfare across the globe!
Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month (DDAM)

In 1987, the Reagan administration officially recognized March as Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month in order to bring attention to the needs and potential of developmentally disabled Americans. The mission of this campaign is to create inclusion for people with developmental disabilities in all aspects of life, as well as educate the public on the barriers that disabled persons still face to this day in order to further positive change and create true equity in communities everywhere.

World Down Syndrome Day (WDSD)

World Down Syndrome Day has been officially observed by the United Nations since 2012. It was proposed by the dedicated team at Down Syndrome International. March 21st was specifically chosen to represent World Down Syndrome Day as it is the 21st day of the third month of the year, signifying the triplication of the 21st chromosome.

Although this year is certainly different due to covid, the annual conferences and events are still taking place virtually, with the dedication to uplift the cause no matter what. You can visit Down Syndrome International’s website here to participate in 2021’s online events and commemorations.

Highlighting The Stories

The world has done a lot to correct old beliefs regarding people with chromosomal abnormalities, but there will always be more work to be done. The fact is that people with disabilities are simply not that different from anyone else. We are all individuals who have specific needs in order to achieve our goals in life.

From modeling, to acting, to conducting symphonies, not to mention owning and running a restaurant – disabled persons continue to break the mold and create so much needed inclusivity and diversity in a range of fields. These amazing accomplishments could only be achieved with the continued efforts to help the world understand that disabilities and differences do not define people, when stigmas are erased the sky is truly the limit.

Get Involved

You can further this mission by using your own voice (be it on social media or within your community) to advocate for disabled persons everywhere, as well as participate or even initiate community events. Visit this page to learn more about involvement opportunities for WDSS, and here to submit your resources for DDAM!