We are committed to providing opportunities for families to get the support they need and make lasting connections. We do this through community-based groups across the metro area, parent programs, sibling support, social events, outreach to the medical community and parent-to-parent connection for new parents.
Local Groups: Networking, Education, Social
We invite you to join our community of individuals with Down syndrome, parents, family, friends, caregivers, professionals, practitioners, researchers and organizations dedicated to improving quality of life for people with Down syndrome.
We facilitate local networking groups in communities throughout the metro Atlanta area, including a support group for the Hispanic community. These groups offer opportunities for playgroups, parent education, fundraising, and community-based social events. These mini associations are the key to helping DSAA serve the large Atlanta metro area. We also connect fathers to the local D.A.D.S. group (Dads Appreciating Down Syndrome).
DSAA networking groups are typically comprised of both new and seasoned parents whose children have Down syndrome. Members are free to join one or more groups to share information and resources, get emotional support and find answers to challenges associated with rearing a child with Down syndrome.
Local groups are supported by DSAA and run by parent volunteers. Members typically stay in touch via events, email and private Facebook groups. DSAA is committed to helping any local networking group get organized and run more efficiently.
To get connected with a group, contact Kimberly Knight at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Moms Night Out
We organize Moms Night Out several times each year for moms across metro Atlanta to gather and socialize. Events have included a Tattoos and Mimosas event where moms gathered to get #theluckyfewtattoo together, wine tastings and speakers.
One of the most common questions asked when a family learns their child has/will be born with Down syndrome is, "how is this going to affect my other child(ren)". Although the typical effect is a positive one, special programs have been created because of the important role siblings play in the development of their brother/sister with Down syndrome. Visit Sibshops for more information.
Connecting with the Medical Community: First Call Ambassadors
The Down Syndrome Association of Atlanta holds training each year for members who volunteer to be First Call Ambassadors to distribute information to OB/GYN and perinatology practices in the Metro Atlanta area. These volunteers are also available to talk with expectant and new parents if requested. The materials include a Medical Provider and an Expectant Parent Guide.
An Expectant Parent Guide will be sent upon request to anyone in Georgia as long as supplies last. Please contact us for a copy.
Making a First Impression: Parent Liasons
The Down Syndrome Association of Atlanta holds training each year for members who volunteer to be Parent Liaisons to the 26 local birthing hospitals in the Metro Atlanta area.
The trained Parent Liaisons are assigned to one or more hospitals and contact the labor and delivery, NICU, and social work staffs there to introduce themselves and they check in monthly to ensure that they have a supply of New Parent Packets to be given to new parents of babies born with Down syndrome. In addition, the Parent Liaisons are available to meet with new parents as requested. New Parent Packets are available in Spanish and a bilingual Parent Liaison is available.
Because many medical professionals are not equipped with updated information on Down syndrome, Parent Liaisons play a critical role in helping new families adjust. Additionally, parent liaisons also provide a special connection to new parents who often are unsure of what to expect. Parents or grandparents of children with Down syndrome themselves, Parent Liaisons can share their own stories and give much-needed support and advice while offering a realistic picture of what it is like to raise a child with Down syndrome.
Note: We hold regular training sessions for new Parent Liaisons. You must attend one of these sessions to become a new Parent Liaison. We need additional people, particularly for the more rural hospitals and medical centers. Please contact us if you are interested in attending one of these sessions.
The Down Syndrome Association of Atlanta(DSAA) is a 501(c)(3) organization funded through donations, grants, corporate sponsorships, memorial donations, and proceeds from several fundraising events, including our annual Buddy Walk ® held in October. Your support goes directly to fund programs and services helping individuals with Down syndrome and their families from birth through adulthood and is greatly appreciated by the Atlanta Down syndrome community.Donate