Over fifty schools, nurseries and businesses supported Portsmouth Down Syndrome Association’s Awareness Week by holding awareness assemblies to educate pupils and staff about Down syndrome, or organising fundraising events including cake sales, concerts and nature walks. Rachael Ross, Portsmouth DSA’s Chairperson said, ‘Support from the community has been overwhelming, with thousands of individuals taking part in our celebrations across the area. Down Syndrome Awareness Week is a great way for us to spread the message that when individuals with Down syndrome are included and given opportunities to participate, they can make very real and positive contributions to their communities.’

Portsmouth Down Syndrome Association provides support and specialist educational services for children across South Hants, including a free School Advisory Service which supports the successful inclusion of children with DS in 60 mainstream schools. Warren Park Primary School in Havant was one of the many schools who showed their support for the charity by holding an awareness assembly and cake sale, raising £308. Tim Kirk, from Bedhampton, whose son Harrison (8) benefits from Portsmouth DSA’s services, also organised a cake sale at his place of work, raising £260. Tim said, ‘We really appreciate the invaluable support the charity gives to us, and it was great to be able to give something back in return.’

Rachael said, ‘It’s very humbling to know that we have so many friends out there in the community. We are particularly grateful to all our schools for their support, and it’s lovely to see so many children working together to support their peers with Down syndrome. A huge thank you to everyone who helped make our celebrations a big success.’ If you would like to find out more about Portsmouth DSA, please visit

Posted on Wed, 19/04/2017 - 15:42