The non-profit organization, Down Syndrome Guild of Dallas, 1978, provides resources and support to families with loved ones who have down syndrome.
They begin services once a child is diagnosed and continue to provide support throughout adulthood.
“I think that one of the most impactful and rewarding things, is seeing those families that just started out when I first started with the guild, [who] had brand new babies and didn’t really know too much about down syndrome and were reaching out to us; and, now that those families are 12 years old, they’ve become the families we rely on to reach out to new families,” executive director of Down Syndrome Guild of Dallas, Jennifer Ford, states.
“They come full circle, with forming teams and providing support, paving the way for new families.”
Jennifer has been with the guild for 12 years now. As executive director, she oversees referrals, resource inquiries, and event planning.
The guild provides programs and monthly events for youth, teens, and adults with down syndrome.
Their events create social opportunities where participants can “build friendships and foster independence.”
On July 28th, 2021, they hosted a field day with the Jesuit College Preparatory School at the Terry Center, providing outside activities, games, and dessert for their families.
Their biggest fundraising event, the Dallas 2021 Buddy Walk, will be Sunday, October 24th, at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, TX. The Buddy Walk is an annual event hosted by the Down Syndrome Guild of Dallas where families in the guild and community members come together in festival-like fun, where there will be face paintings, inflatables, games, activities, and a one-mile walk.
Jennifer states, “The whole community is invited to attend. It’s a great family-friendly day for not just our families, but for the whole community.”
Registration for the 2021 Dallas Buddy Walk can be found here.