About Down's Syndrome : Who We Are and What We Do

Our aim

To create the conditions that all people with Down’s syndrome need to live full and rewarding lives.

Our mission

Helping people with Down’s syndrome to live full and rewarding lives.

Who we are

We are the only organisation in this country focusing solely on all aspects of living successfully with Down’s syndrome. Since 1970, we have grown from being a local parent support group into a national charity with over 20,000 members, a national office in Teddington, Middlesex and an office in Northern Ireland. Despite this, the organisation is run by a total staff of 36 (many of them part time). We also work closely with over 130 local support groups throughout the UK.

What we do

Our organisation is divided into various teams, including:

  • Information – run the helpline; provide information about all aspects of living with Down’s syndrome including specialist advisers on benefits, education, health and social care; advise new parents or anyone with questions; promote and facilitate information exchange between members through various groups; advise on employment for people with Down’s syndrome
  • Fundraising – responsible for raising money for the association through events, sponsorship and trusts
  • Communications – give key messages to the media, public and professionals; influence policy making; responsible for external publications
  • Training – provide training throughout the UK for members, professionals and carers
  • Membership – responsible for all administration surrounding new members, existing members and affiliated groups

The DSA is fortunate to work at the Langdon Down Centre, the former home of pioneering Victorian physician, Dr John Langdon Down, after whom Down’s syndrome was named. View the Langdon Down Museum for more information about the history of Dr Langdon Down, his work and our historic offices.