The “Sweet Sixteen” 16th Annual Family Cafe is set for June 6-8, 2014

The “Sweet Sixteen” 16th Annual Family Cafe is set for June 6-8, 2014

Excerpt — The “Sweet Sixteen” 16th Annual Family Cafe is set for June 6-8, 2014 at the Hilton Orlando in Orlando, Florida. This three-day event provides a venue for people with disabilities and their families to learn about available services, connect with policy makers and network with each other. It features dozens of breakout sessions, a […]

2014 Hear We Come!

2014 Hear We Come!

2014 Hear we come! I am excited about this year and I have positive thoughts and high hopes that achievements will be made. I am one to believe that when one door closes another one opens. In 2013 I quit my job to be able to accommodate the needs of my son better. With the […]

Our Polar Express Adventure

Our Polar Express Adventure

I hope each and everyone of you had a fantastic holiday season! I can’t believe how fast it came and went! I get sad each year when it is all over. It is such a magical time of year. This year was extra magical for my little man as we surprised him with a trip […]

Thank You Springfield Fire Department and Old Navy

Thank You Springfield Fire Department and Old Navy

I want to thank the Springfield Fire Department for their wonderful generosity this Christmas, and Old Navy for making a child smile! For a while now I wanted my son to see Santa. We attempted the mall, but the line at the mall was to long and he would not have been able to wait […]

NIH establishes Down syndrome patient registry

  Excerpt from https://dsconnect.nih.gov/en/announcements/415-video-tutorials-available.html A new Down syndrome patient registry will facilitate contacts and information sharing among families, patients, researchers and parent groups. The National Institutes of Health has awarded a contract to PatientCrossroads to operate the registry. The company has created patient-centric registries for muscular dystrophy and many rare disorders.   People with Down syndrome […]

First Virtual / Phone Support Meetup from VFDS!

First Virtual / Phone Support Meetup from VFDS!

You are invited to the first ever virtual phone meetup hosted by Voices For Down syndrome. This is a great opportunity to talk with other moms, dads, and providers. Share your ideas, tips and resources. Just about anything! Each session will have a theme! We will do our best to stick to that theme! For […]

10 Things You Need to Know for Back-to-School From Disability.Gov

Disability.Gov has listed some great tips and resources to start the school year off right! – Reduced-Price/Free Breakfast or Lunch – National Dissemination Center for Children with – - Disabilities (NICHCY) Fact Sheets – Individualized Education Program (IEP) – Power Up! Apps for Kids with Special Needs and – Learning Differences – Accessible Instructional Materials […]

Knowing What is Right and When To Do It

Knowing What is Right and When To Do It

  If someone told me 10 years ago I would be in this situation I would have laughed. I was career driven! I wanted to do right by my son and succeed at everything I could. I knew that by becoming career driven I would be able to provide for him as a single parent. […]

Identification for your Non Verbal Child – What Works For Your Child

Identification for your Non Verbal Child – What Works For Your Child

Many children and even some adults who have Down syndrome are Non Verbal. A majority of the population has at best difficult to understand language and speech. Being a mom to a Down syndrome child who is Non Verbal my heart raced today when I realized that I did not have adequate safety measures for […]

Auditory Processing – Free Ebook

Auditory Processing – Free Ebook

I have blogged in the past about how my son has Auditory Processing Disorder. In simplified terms his brain does not process words heard they way it should. Now I am not expert by no means and I am always learning. Tonight I came across one of the best and easiest to understand information on […]

I Thanked God For My Angel – He Gives Me Hope

I Thanked God For My Angel – He Gives Me Hope

    I thanked god this morning as we wake up to hear of yet another tragedy in our county. Sometimes I will admit that it is hard having a child with developmental disabilities.  It is hard sometime to know that he is not like all the other children in the neighborhood. But this morning when […]

Prayers Go Out To Boston!

Prayers Go Out To Boston!

I want to express my deepest sympathy, thoughts, and prayers to all those in Boston that are faced with such tragedy   As a native Bostonian It is hard to believe that such a horrible thing could happen.   Pray for Boston! Pray For America!   Tweet

World Autism Day! Dual Diagnosis of Down syndrome and Autism

World Autism Day! Dual Diagnosis of Down syndrome and Autism

First I want to apologize to my subscribers/followers. I have not been posting as much lately. There are a million reasons why, but the main reason is my family has to come first and life has been very crazy around here this winter. Another reason as I have talked about before, as parents to special needs kids […]

My Son Rocked Special Olympics!!

My Son Rocked Special Olympics!!

A week ago today my son pariticipated in the Florida Regional Special Olympics. I think I was more excieted then he was! This was the first time that he went to the regionals, and guess what???? He won! Yay my CJ! I could not have been prouder of him! To make it even better He […]

World Down syndrome Day 21 March- Stop, Look, and Learn!

World Down syndrome Day 21 March- Stop, Look, and Learn!

    Every year around the globe on March 21st people celebrate the gift of Down syndrome. There are events happening, people are writing about it, blogging about it, and just sharing their amazing stories. Anything to get the normal population to just STOP, LOOK AND LEARN. STOP, LOOK and LEARN about Down syndrome, why […]

Sequestration A Parents Concern

Sequestration A Parents Concern

Well we all are hearing about it in the news, on the radio, within our workplaces, and just about anywhere you go today you hear about the Sequestration. Now I do not claim to be an expert on the subject by no means but as a parent I have to express my concerns. As a […]

I Am Not Invisible! A New Amazing Documentary!

I Am Not Invisible! A New Amazing Documentary!

I had the pleasure of corresponding with a very bright and talented young women. She has asked me to share with you her new documentary on her dearest friend who has Down syndrome. Erin Corrado is a Toronto filmmaker. Her first film to be publicly screened was a short called 2054, which played at the […]

I Am Only One Voice

I Am Only One Voice

    When I first started Voicesfordownsyndrome it was by another name and after the birth of my son. I need to find a way to reach out to others, share what I was learning, and learn for myself all at the same time. I started out first with a small website just of information […]

Awareness Being Raised In The Wall Street Journal!

“Get Developmental Care” is the title to an article published in the Wall Street Journal. The WSJ states “Many kids struggle with developmental problems at some point in their childhoods, and getting care for them can be costly and confusing.”  ”If your child isn’t babbling or sitting at nine months, for instance, struggles with stairs […]

It is about time!!!!!!!!!! School Must Open SportsTo Disabled – US Says

It is about time!!!!!!!!!! School Must Open SportsTo Disabled – US Says

This was nice to wake up to today. It was the first think I read when I took a peek at my messages while having my coffee. I am sure like myself many of you have received this information today one way or another. All I really have to say is………. It is about time!!!!!!!!!! […]

We Are Back!!!

We Are Back!!!

Wow what a few weeks it has been!! I hope everyone had a fantastic holiday season! Things were quite busy around our house! If you recently came by and noticed the site down I do apologize for that! Big issue with my hosting, but finally have it all worked out! That is what I get […]

A Year In Review For 2012

A Year In Review For 2012

What a year it has been to! When I look back on 2012 I can’t believe all that we have overcome this past year. We began our year off in a new school with more inclusion. The school year had already been half over when 2012 came around, but Christopher was still adapting and moving […]

It Is Official! We are a Down syndrome, Autism, ADD, ADHD, and SPD Family

It Is Official! We are a Down syndrome, Autism, ADD, ADHD, and SPD Family

  Since My Christopher was 3 years old I knew he was not your average child with Down syndrome. He was always in his own world, his communications were not emerging, and he was all over the place. Well as I have noted before we have been rounds with doctors, teachers, and everyone else. He […]

This Is One Of Those Times Where I am Happy That My Son Does Not Understand

This Is One Of Those Times Where I am Happy That My Son Does Not Understand

The horror that took place in Connecticut at Sandy Hook is heartbreaking to say the least. I can’t even begin to imagine what those parents, that community are going through. The nightmares and the horrible images that must play over and over again in minds of the children that survived must be overwhelming for them. Those children have a […]

Why We Are Pursuing A Second Developmental Psychological Test

Why We Are Pursuing A Second Developmental Psychological Test

Every three years the school system administers a psychological test on my son. On may children with developmental disabilities sometimes may be even more often than that. This week I am taking my son outside the school district for another round of tests and I am question why from so many. My answer to them is why not! I want to […]

Count Your Blessings – Off The Beaten Path Of Down syndrome

Count Your Blessings – Off The Beaten Path Of Down syndrome

There are times that I can honestly say that I sit down and feel sorry for myself that I have been given this life. There are times when I can honestly say I wonder how much more I can deal with. Then there are those times where I can honestly say I feel so amazingly […]

Holiday Shopping Tips and Lessons Learned

Holiday Shopping Tips and Lessons Learned

Ho Ho Ho, It is that time a year again and the stores are full of sensory stimulation. Lights, music, decorations, and yes even Santa. When you have a child with Down syndrome and sensory issues you need to be vigilant of how the hustle and bustle of the holiday season will affect your child. […]

Body Riverview girl with Down syndrome found in pond – This Madness Needs To Stop

Body Riverview girl with Down syndrome found in pond By JOSÉ PATIÑO GIRONA | The Tampa Tribune Published: October 23, 2012 Updated: October 23, 2012 – 12:17 AM » 2 Comments | Post a Comment RIVERVIEW – Deputies searched on horseback, with police dogs and from helicopters. Teachers and janitors frantically opened lockers and peered […]

The Last Day Of National Down Syndrome Awareness Month — One Last Thought -31 for 21

The Last Day Of National Down Syndrome Awareness Month — One Last Thought -31 for 21

Before I head to bed tonight on this Halloween, and last night of National Down syndrome awareness month I wanted to through in a few of own personal thoughts. It has been a great month for me even though I did not make it to 31 posts this month. ( Sorry).. but wow what a […]

Hurricane Sandy and Down syndrome

Hurricane Sandy and Down syndrome

Our thoughts and prayers go to to all the people in the North East  and Mid Atlantic States that are affected by Hurricane Sandy.  Two of my children are both up there so I have been keeping track of the situation. I pray that each one of you took the necessary precautions for your family and are […]

Halloween Tips For Our Special Kiddos! 31 For 21 !

Halloween Tips For Our Special Kiddos! 31 For 21 !

I wrote this 2 years ago but it all still holds true! Just remember you know your child and you know their limits. Also remember that just because something was ok last year does not necessarily mean it will be ok this year! Children grow and change and you need to keep that in mind when planning […]

Buddy Walk 2012! We Walked For Dual Diagnosis!! Down syndrome and Autism! 31 For 21

Buddy Walk 2012! We Walked For Dual Diagnosis!!  Down syndrome and Autism! 31 For 21

Saturday we had our annual Buddy Walk in Panama City Beach. Thanks to Acton up With Downs Inc,  They did a great job as usual hosting the annual walk!! This year we did a first for my CJ and we put a team together. Team CJ was walking to raise awareness for the dual diagnosis of […]

My Guest Blog on Tys Adventures! 31 For 21

My Guest Blog on Tys Adventures! 31 For 21

I was so honored when I was asked by Ty’s mom Tracy to be a guest blogger on her blog Ty’s Adventures. I wasn’t real sure what I would blog about, or if I even could match up to some of the amazing parents she has already shared during her “October 2012 ~ Down Syndrome Awareness Month […]

Sterol Lipid Metabolism in Down Syndrome -31 for 21

It has been a long time since I have read new research on Down syndrome. So I was happy to see this. I will admit that a lot of it is above my comprehension but it does give me hope. Understanding how the inner working of people with down syndrome can be confusing, and intimidating to most. […]

“Pay It Forward” During Down syndrome Awareness Month- 31 for 21

“Pay It Forward” During Down syndrome Awareness Month-  31 for 21

I know I haven’t been able to keep up with the 32 for 21 this year, but really I have a good excuse. Really!! Which brings me to the topic for today’s post? As an advocate I try my best to spend every moment I can to support my family, my son, and the families […]

Read Between The Lines – 31 For 21

Read Between The Lines – 31 For 21

So today as I was being absolutely lazy, my CJ became a TV nut. Now something you need to know about CJ is he knows more about how to navigate everything more than I do. He can log on to Netflix, get into the kids zone, and pick a movie. He loads his DVDs, and […]

October Means Buddy Walk Time!!! Team CJ Is Rocking To Raise Awareness For Down syndrome/ Autism Dual Diagnosis – 32 For 21

October Means Buddy Walk Time!!! Team CJ Is Rocking To Raise Awareness For Down syndrome/ Autism Dual Diagnosis – 32 For 21

The Buddy Walk is an opportunity for anyone and everyone to walk — or support a walker — and raise funds for the Acton Up With Downs Inc Buddy Walk and the National Down Syndrome Society. Last year alone, over $9.5 million dollars was raised nationwide for local and national education, research and advocacy programs […]

Celebrating Disability Employment Awareness Month In Panama City

I hear often about the transition that our children face when they come of age. I try not to think about it to much because that means that my baby is growing up. I stay up to date on what is going on and read articles but it is definitely not a priority to me at them […]

The 6th Annual 31 for 21 Challenge!

The 6th Annual 31 for 21 Challenge!

I love this time of year! Especially the month of October. No not because of the Fall or Halloween, but because October is National Down syndrome Awareness Month. I have taken on this challenge once again! Now that things are quieting down around the household, my goal is to meet this challenge!! Down syndrome is […]

Down syndrome vs Autism – Health Insurance – Discrimination?

I waited to write this blog for several reasons, but the main reason was I wanted to speak intelligently on it. To my surprise I am finding little information. It makes me wonder if I am truly understanding the situation.  I want to reiterate my disclaimer. I do not claim to be a medical professional. I am […]

We are going through some growing pains!

Please excuse us while we are still growing. We are working on adding some training, increase in resources, new logo, and possibly a new name. Please check back often as I am working very hard on getting this project to where it needs to be to support our families in Northwest Florida. Tweet

Coastal Vacation For Special Needs Families Becomes A Reality!

Coastal Vacation For Special Needs Families Becomes A Reality!

Several years ago I have a vision to help families with special needs vacation in a more realistic setting.  The only problem was my lack of funding. I began working on a plans to open up a bed and breakfast, or some type of recreational facility hear along the Gulf Coast Of Florida. As a parent with […]

DYI Weighted Vest for Sensory Processing Disorder! CJ Style!!

DYI Weighted Vest for Sensory Processing Disorder! CJ Style!!

Over the past few weeks I have had a lot of people come up to me and ask me about my CJ’s new vest.  So I thought I would take the opportunity to share on here as well. Children with Down syndrome can often have what is called Sensory Processing Disorder, or also known as […]

Caregiver Burnout! Are you at Risk?

Caregiver Burnout! Are you at Risk?

After several long weeks around here it made me realize that I don’t take time out for myself. That I was experiencing caregiver burnout. Caregiver burnout refers to a condition in which an individual/caregiver grows less and less sympathetic to a particular circumstance over time. Because of the condition, individuals are at risk for depression, […]

Bridging the Gap Within Communities In The Florida Panhandle – A Developmental Disabilities Collaboration Effort

Bridging the Gap Within Communities In The Florida Panhandle – A Developmental Disabilities Collaboration Effort

Ove the past couple of months I have  been revamping and growing Voices For Down syndrome.  Let me start by reintroducing myself for those of you who are just joing my blog, my cause. My name is Debra and I am the mother to Christopher who is now almost 10 with Down syndrome. Christopher has […]

Financial Services for People With Down syndrome

Financial Services for People With Down syndrome

National Down Syndrome Society Joins Forces with Prudential Excerpt For Prudential.com —The Prudential Insurance Company of America is proud to be working with the National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) to provide information and services to families who have a loved one with Down syndrome. The services are offered through the Prudential Special Needs Solutions…For All […]

Becoming an Effective Advocate for your Child’s Education Pragmatic Strategies to “Navigate the System” – 31 March

Becoming an Effective Advocate for your Child’s Education Pragmatic Strategies to “Navigate the System” – 31 March

Parent Workshop March 31, 2012 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.  12:30 – 3:00 p.m. Individual Consultation Messiah Lutheran Church 3701 West Hwy 390 RSVP- 769-5371 Becoming an Effective Advocate for your Child’s Education Pragmatic Strategies to “Navigate the System”   Presenter Disability Rights Florida Lee Clark has spent the last 34 years working with high […]

Break The Habit!!! Stop Using The Word R-Word!

Break The Habit!!! Stop Using The Word R-Word!

After seeing some of the comments on this video and throughout the day on the Internet I am appalled at this county. It is disturbing to me that so many people do not get how using the Rword can be so hurtful to someone with developmental disabilities and those that love them. This is not […]

Local Communities Have To Start Supporting Their Special Needs Families

Recently I have been involved with several situations in the Bay County area that supports special needs families. I have to say as a parent I am outraged at the lack of support I have seen from community members, services, business, locals, etc. These families in this county are running out of options and funds […]

Sensory Processing Disorder and Down syndrome!

Sensory Processing Disorder and Down syndrome!

Help raise awareness of Sensory Processing Disorder and Down’s syndrome! SPD is not just related to Autism! My son has been fighting this battle since we first discovered he had SPD 6 years ago. This has made it a challenge for him in his learning, his social skills, and his over all happiness. It has been a challenge […]

Tuesday Talks

Tuesday Talks

I believe that everyone has a voice and everyone has ideas, unfortunately many do not get a chance to share there thoughts for one reason or another. Many times a person is intimidated by whom they are asking it to. Or they may feel as if it just is not important to anyone but them. […]

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