Monday, March 21, is World Down Syndrome Day

Photo courtesy of World Down Syndrome Day

Down Syndrome is the most common chromosomal condition diagnosed in the United States, and each year around 6,000 babies born in the United States are diagnosed with Down Syndrome. This means that roughly one in every 700 babies are born with Down Syndrome. This genetic disorder, also called Trisomy 21, occurs when abnormal cell division results in an extra full or partial copy of chromosome 21. The reality is that Down Syndrome is far more common than people think and in order to raise awareness about it, March 21 of each year marks World Down Syndrome Day.

Here at Bellarmine, for many of us our exposure to Down Syndrome is seldom. While there isn’t a special education program here, this doesn’t mean that those with Down Syndrome aren’t a part of the community,  There are certainly people and families at Bellarmine who know and love someone with Down Syndrome.

The L’Arche Club, one of the many clubs, is a service-oriented one that takes Bellarmine students to work with the marginalized in our community, many of whom have some sort of developmental disorder. On World Down Syndrome day, the L’Arche Club is encouraging students to wear crazy socks on Monday, March 21, a tradition that stems from the extra copy of the 21st chromosome looking like a sock.

Junior L’Arche member, basketball player, and varsity lacrosse player Peter Matthew announced that the club will be having a friendly competition for the craziest socks, with a cash prize for the winner. Those wishing to participate can send a picture of them wearing crazy socks to the L’Arche Instagram (@larcheclubofbellarmine) on Monday, March 21.

As a Jesuit school that preaches loving values like walking with the marginalized, it is important to remember that there are many different paths to learning, loving, and being, and that we should accept and love every member of our community equally.

Photo courtesy of World Down Syndrome Day