Rochdale News | News Headlines | A new charity group is ready to help Rochdale’s Down syndrome community shine

Date published: September 25, 2022

An exciting day of circus-themed family fun held this month officially launched Rochdale DS All Stars, a brand new charity group aimed at offering friendship and support to people with Down syndrome and to their families.

Amidst juggling, spinning plates and whirling diablo, courtesy of The Skylight Circus, children were able to try their hand at circus techniques, while parents were able to unwind, relax and trade advice while enjoying a mindfulness painting organized by the Manchester Creative Society. .

The group was started by a trio of women from Rochdale and was inspired after founding members Claire Minett, who has Mosaic Down syndrome, and Lalain Meskyzadeh, a parent of a daughter with Down syndrome, received a grant of £500 from Action Together.

A first event that took place was so successful that it was decided to formalize the group and with the help of another parent, Emma Lambert, Rochdale DS All Stars was born.

The team now plans to hold family get-togethers quarterly, while baby and toddler sessions will take place on the last Monday of each month at Jolly Josh in Castleton, 10am-12pm and parent coffee mornings will be held at Hare Hill House, Littleborough, on the second Thursday of each month, between 10am and 12pm.

A Facebook group will also be available to help report new parents and offer ad hoc advice and support.

    Budding circus performers get tips from Skylight Circus
Budding circus performers get tips from Skylight Circus

Claire commented: “We are delighted to have launched Rochdale DS All Stars. We had felt for some time that there was a real need locally for such a group and are extremely grateful to Action Together for giving us the grant to get us started. The Circus Fun Day was great fun and we look forward to hosting more events and seeing the group grow.

Lalain added, “As parents of children with special needs, we love our children unconditionally and wholeheartedly. As with anything new to you, the beginning of the journey can come with unexpected challenges and that’s when you need the help and support of other families who have been right where you are. We are truly committed to ensuring that families in Rochdale and our surrounding towns have this accessible network of friendship and support.

In the future, the group also hopes to be able to facilitate the training and support of health and education professionals who work with Down’s syndrome in order to enrich the local offer.

A young member tries his hand at mindful painting
A young member tries his hand at mindful painting

Down syndrome is a genetic condition in which individuals are born with an extra chromosome, which can lead to some learning disability and can also present physical problems in terms of mobility and other associated health issues. However, with the right support and opportunities, people with Down syndrome will reach their full potential and live enjoyable and fulfilling lives.

For more information on Rochdale DS All Stars, please join the Rochdale DS All Stars Facebook group or email [email protected]

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