Sources Media Release

Canadian Down Syndrome Society reaches out
to Aboriginal families

Where do Aboriginal families turn for information and support when a child with Down syndrome is born? How best can mainstream non-profit organizations offer resources to families living on reserve or in isolated communities?

The Canadian Down Syndrome Society (CDSS) is celebrating National Aboriginal Day June 21 with the launch of their "Connecting to the Wheel: Cultural Resource Toolkit." Working with Aboriginal parents, community leaders and elders the CDSS developed this toolkit to meet the needs of local Down syndrome support organizations across Canada that want to learn more about Aboriginal culture and share information about Down syndrome.

This practical toolkit was designed to introduce cultural sensitivity concepts to local non-profit organizations providing support to families with children with Down syndrome. The tool will also assist other agencies to increase cultural awareness.

Elissa Twoyoungmen, Project Coordinator, says it was important for CDSS as an organization to learn to listen to Aboriginal people about how information can be effectively shared in their communities.

The "Connecting to the Wheel: Cultural Toolkit" is available for download from the Canadian Down Syndrome website at or you can contact the CDSS office toll-free at 1-800-883-5608.

The Canadian Down Syndrome Society thanks Health Canada for the financial support that made this project possible. The mission of the CDSS is: to ensure equitable opportunities for all Canadians with Down syndrome.

Canadian Down Syndrome Society
811 - 14th Street NW
Calgary, AB T2N 2A4
Phone:(403) 270-8500 Fax: (403) 270-8291
Toll Free: 1-800-883-5608
Web site:

Contact: Elizabeth Dolman, Executive Director
Canadian Down Syndrome Society (CDSS)

Embargo until: June 21, Calgary, Alberta

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