“Down Syndrome Answers” helping parents make tough decisions

Learning that an unborn child has Down syndrome can be a confusing and stressful time for parents. They often have many questions about what Down syndrome means to them and their child – When will they walk? When will they talk? How long will they live? – and usually only ten days to decide how to proceed with the pregnancy following the diagnosis.

Invariably, they will turn to Google for answers and the Canadian Down Syndrome Society is meeting them there with “Down Syndrome Answers,” a series of short videos that feature Canadians with Down syndrome answering parents’ most-asked questions. After all, there’s no one better suited to answer those questions than people living with Down syndrome.

Beginning today, and coinciding with the start of Canadian Down Syndrome Week (Nov. 1-7), whenever someone in Canada Googles a question about Down syndrome, the answer video will appear at the top of the search results, providing honest and powerful answers to tough questions.

“The majority of prospective parents know very little about Down syndrome,” said Kirk Crowther, National Executive Director, Canadian Down Syndrome Society. “Doctors do their best and there are lots of websites offering the medical perspective but they typically use very clinical terms that don’t capture the emotional and human side of the Down syndrome story. We wanted to change that with ‘Down Syndrome Answers.'”

Created with the help of creative agency FCB Canada, the campaign gives people both sides of the Down syndrome story, so they can make a fully informed decision about their pregnancy. The project aims to educate the public, increase understanding, and present a fair and balanced story of the developmental disability as told by people living with Down syndrome.

The videos are hosted on YouTube and on the Canadian Down Syndrome Society website at http://cdss.ca/down-syndrome-answers/.