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Our Mission is to educate stakeholders, unite our community, and build bridges between worlds, so that individuals with Down syndrome and their families are connected to opportunities for an amazing life.

Founded in 1979, The Down Syndrome Association of Atlanta (DSAA) is a 501 (c)(3) Georgia non-profit organization dedicated to providing individuals with Down syndrome and their families life-long community connections. 

Join us on Sunday, October 16th at Centennial Olympic park for the 19th annual Buddy Walk Atlanta!

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People with Down syndrome, families and friends will walk a 1/4 mile route around Centennial Olympic Park where attendees enjoy live music, entertainment, games, bounce houses and many other family oriented activities.  Mark your calendar and be prepared to have a great experience! 

Family Registration is $55, individual registration is $20.  Registration includes lunch, drinks, snacks, an official BW t-shirt and access to games and activities. 

Registration today at https://www.ds-stride.org/atlantabuddywalk!

 

Note: t-shirts are NOT guaranteed for on-site registrants, so sign up now.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Its' almost time to head back to the classroom! 

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To support our families this school year DSAA has compiled a list of resources to assist our families in navigating the complex issues of IEPs and Inclusion.

Find the entire list here: http://www.dsaatl.org/iep_and_inclusion_resource_list

Something missing or other ideas that we should include?  Email us at info@dsaatl.org and let us know!

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Want photos from past DSAA events? 

View the professionally shot photos here and comment on the photo you’d like. You will receive an email to download the photo for FREE!  

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  • Featured page

    Spotlight: Legislative Agenda 2016

    Excerpted from the GCDD 2016 Legislative Agenda.

    Make Georgia an Employment First State

    Currently, the Georgia system creates many barriers for individuals with disabilities to work. Although the majority of Georgians with developmental disabilities want to work, only 8% of Georgians with developmental disabilities are currently employed in the community.1 Under an Employment First policy, state agencies will need to re-align their policies and funding to prioritize employment for all working-age Georgians with disabilities.

    Support Students to Attend Inclusive Post-Secondary Education Programs in GA

    Individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities who receive post-secondary education are more likely to find paid employment than those who don’t, and their earnings are 73% higher than peers who do not receive post-secondary education.

    UNLOCK (formerly “Unlock the Waiting Lists!”)

    GCDD is proud to support UNLOCK, formerly known as “Unlock the Waiting Lists!” The UNLOCK campaign advocates with Georgians with disabilities so they and their families can live full lives and contribute to Georgia communities and its economy. We believe Georgia must rebalance its system of long-term services and supports, so that fewer dollars are spent on institutional care and more dollars are invested into HCBS services.

    We Need More DD Waivers

    Out of the several Medicaid waivers that Georgia offers to those who qualify for this level of care, the New Options Waiver (NOW) and the Comprehensive Supports Waiver Program (COMP) have by far Georgia’s longest waiting list. There are over 8,000 individuals with developmental disabilities on this waiting list. These individuals and their families are desperately hanging on and need Georgia to throw them a lifeline.

    Address the ICWP Rate Disparity

    The Independent Care Waiver Program (ICWP) provides vital assistance to people with significant physical disabilities and traumatic brain injury to help them with daily tasks such as toileting, bathing, dressing, meals and housekeeping. The Medicaid reimbursement rate is significantly lower than all the other Georgia Medicaid waivers making it extremely difficult to find qualified caregivers. By the time home health agencies take their cut, caregivers often are paid only $8-9/hour.

    Children’s Freedom Initiative: Bring Georgia’s Children Home

    There are a number of school-age children living in nursing facilities or intermediate care facilities. They are in facilities simply because they have a disability and need care despite the fact that it is completely possible to care for them in the community. Georgia needs to shut the front door to these facilities and ensure every child has a permanent loving home.

    The Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act

    An ABLE account is a tax advantaged savings account that will allow people with disabilities to save money without putting their benefits in jeopardy. It is limited to individuals with significant disabilities who became disabled before age 26 and must be spent on certain qualified expenses. Although the federal legislation that enables these accounts was passed by Congress and signed into law in 2014, states must pass their own bills to establish ABLE programs for their residents. We anticipate multiple ABLE state bills being filed during this session.

    Support Georgians Who Care for Their Families: The Family Care Act

    Many Georgians balance their work lives with caring for their families. The Family Care Act would enable Georgians who have earned sick leave to use up to five days of that leave to care for sick members of their immediate family. The Family Care Act does not add any additional sick days or require employers to provide them; it only allows Georgians to use the sick days they’ve already earned to care for family members.

    Change the Standard to Prove Intellectual Disabilities in Capital Punishment Cases

    In 2002, the US Supreme Court said it is wrong to execute a person with intellectual disabilities because it violates the Eighth Amendment’s ban on cruel and unusual punishment. But in Georgia, it is extremely difficult for an individual to prove in court that they have intellectual disabilities. Georgia is the only one of the 50 states that requires a person to prove “beyond a reasonable doubt” that they have intellectual disabilities in capital punishment cases.

     

    For more information visit GCDD.

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  • Upcoming events

    Wednesday, September 14, 2016 at 07:00 PM
    Offices of DLA Piper

    September 2016 Board Meeting

    Saturday, September 17, 2016 at 09:30 AM
    FOCUS Offices in Atlanta, GA

    September New Parent Seminar

    WHEN: September 17 from 9:30am - 1:30pm

    WHERE: FOCUS Offices (3825 Presidential Pkwy, Atlanta, GA 30340)

    WHAT:

    • DSAA parents will share some helpful resources and encouraging stories
    • We will discuss medical and developmental issues for infants with Down syndrome.
    • Debbie Dobbs, M.S, will discuss applying for the Deeming Waiver.
    • Scott Jefferies, CLU, CFP, will discuss financial planning for families of children with special needs.

    RSVP by calling FOCUS at 770-234-9111 or email Elizabeth@focus-ga.org

    *Note a light breakfast will be included.

    See all events