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Foyle Down Syndrome Trust

An organisation that supports children and young people with Down Syndrome
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About Foyle Down Syndrome TrustPicture of Adam, who was supported by the Foyle Down Syndrome Trust

Foyle Down Syndrome Trust supports children and young people with Down Syndrome, enabling them to live full, independent and productive lives.

Their National Lottery Funding

Foyle Down Syndrome Trust received £599,032 in 2016 for their five-year Healthy Hearts and Minds project, which works with children and young people with Down Syndrome in the Derry and Strabane, and Causeway Coast and Glens District Council areas.

The project includes a gardening programme, outdoor pursuits, health workshops and a mentoring support programme.

“With their support, Adam is like a different person.”

Kevin Morrison once feared that his son, Adam, who has Down Syndrome, would struggle to do the things that other children take for granted, like playing football and socialising with friends.

“We found out 20 minutes after Adam was born that he had Down Syndrome. It was a shock and we had no idea of the extent of what it meant.

“In the first couple of months there were so many appointments: physiotherapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy and gene therapy. It’s was a lot to deal with.”

It could have been an isolating experience, but Foyle Down Syndrome Trust got in touch to offer support and put them in contact with other families who could help.

Kevin said being able to work with other families and Down Syndrome Trust to design the right support for Adam has been invaluable.

“The team at Foyle Down Syndrome Trust get the parents involved at every stage. Lorraine Gallen, who manages the Trust, is very approachable. When I asked her about running a football club, the kids were playing within a week.

“Adam loves football now and has got very good at it – he doesn’t just kick the ball, he’s starting to understand the rules and communicate with the other players, so it’s great for his development.

“With the support of Foyle Down Syndrome Trust over the past few years Adam is like a different person,” Kevin said.

“I spent so many years standing in corridors in hospitals but now I’m on the side lines of his football games or watching him swimming. As a parent it’s great to watch his growing confidence and see him handling these situations that I never thought he could.”

Find out more

Foyle Down Syndrome Trust website