Voices & 21 Magazine

Organization Name:
Canadian Down Syndrome Society
City & State:
Organization Website:
http://www.cdss.ca http://www.cdss.ca
Describe your creative piece – what is it and what has it been used for, and why is it innovative?
Voices Magazine is the only North American publication written by and for people with Down syndrome and it showcases the contributions of these individuals. It is a valuable publication where members, families, and self-advocates can share ideas and artwork. 21 Magazine is an exclusive publication of the Canadian Down Syndrome Society (CDSS). It features articles relevant to people with Down syndrome and their families such as activities at the CDSS, current events involving individuals with Down syndrome, and reader submitted content. With significant decreases in funding as a result of the recent economic downturn, the staff of the CDSS had to find a new way to deliver information to their members that was both economically responsible and creative. This Voices / 21 Magazine is a dual publication, an innovative combination of 2 separate magazines into one cost effective source of information. By flipping the magazine on its end you can easily switch between the 2 newsletters.
What issue or problem were you working to address with this piece?
Historically, individuals with Down syndrome have not been viewed as fully included members of society. In the past they were a marginalized group within society and today they still struggle to break free of the "disabled" label. The Canadian Down Syndrome Society’s vision is a proud Canada, where ALL are welcome, we embrace diversity and we value everyone equally. Our mission is to ensure equitable opportunities for all Canadians with Down syndrome. This means, to make sure all Canadians with Down syndrome have the right supports to give them the same opportunities as everyone else. Summer 2010 Voices / 21 Magazine represents the culmination of advocacy and information. As Voices is the only North American publication written by and for people with Down syndrome, it clearly exhibits the valuable contributions and abilities of Canadians with Down syndrome and demonstrates the limitless possibilities of individuals that only need the opportunity and support to grow.
How has your submission successfully impacted your organization’s ability to solve this issue/problem?
Since it’s inception, the Summer 2010 Voices / 21 Magazine has had a resounding impact, not only on our members and supporters, but it has had a far reaching impact around the globe. It has helped to deconstruct uniformed stereotypes, challenged people’s misperceptions and promoted equality for all people. With Summer 2010 Voices / 21 Magazine, we have celebrated the unique contributions of people with Down syndrome as fully included members of society. Through Summer 2010 Voices / 21 Magazine, we have demonstrated to Canada and the world the great things that people with Down syndrome can do, and given a voice to individuals who would not otherwise be heard.