, Autumn 2009. Down Syndrome Victoria Members Journal
The changes experienced during the previous threedecades include the decline of institutionalisation, theintroduction of routine cardiac surgery for infants withDown syndrome, the development of pre-natal tests forDown syndrome, the introduction of early childhoodintervention, and recognition of the beneﬁts of qualityeducation for people with intellectual disabilities.The health and welfare changes made over the lastthirty years have resulted in a change in the proﬁle of the population of people with Down syndrome. Thepopulation continues to increase due to the combinedinﬂuences of a steady birth rate (45 to 60 Victorianbabies are born with Down syndrome each year) andthe rapidly increasing life expectancy of people withDown syndrome (life expectancy is now approachingthat of the rest of the population). The challenges forthe ﬁrst generation and beyond of adults with Downsyndrome who will signiﬁcantly outlive their parentsare considerable.When the association was founded thirty years ago,one of its goals was to assist parents ﬁnd what limitedinformation was available about Down syndrome.Rapidly changing information technology has resultedin an exponential increase in the information available.The role of the association is increasingly to helpfamilies ﬁlter the information available to identify themost useful and relevant.The limited resources of Down Syndrome Victoriahave traditionally been channelled into supportingparents of babies and young children. As a result of the changing proﬁle of people with Down syndrome,Down Syndrome Victoria is now committed toproviding support to people with Down syndromeand their families throughout the course of their lives,particularly during difﬁcult transition periods.All of these changes mean that the role and nature of services and support provided by Down SyndromeVictoria need careful evaluation and planning.The
Visualisation of success 2008-2013
will be usedby staff and committee and to educate new staff,volunteers, members and other stakeholders about ourvision of success for Down Syndrome Victoria.
Down Syndrome Victoria celebrated thirty years of support in 2008.From humble beginnings as a group of like-minded parents coming togetherto support one another and share information, the organisation now ﬁndsitself serving a very different population in a very different environment.
Down Syndrome Victoria
Preparing forthe future
Visualisation of Success
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