Sveti Nikola

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What people with Down Syndrome can do – we mark March 21st with a new emoticon

11 March 2015

Each year we mark March 21st, World Down Syndrome Day. The choice of date comes from the fact that the writing tallies with the other name of the syndrome – Trisomy 21. The third copy of the chromosome is unique only for people with Down Syndrome. The additional genetic material causes delay in the child’s development.

The condition is described for the first time by the English doctor and geneticist, John Langdon Down, in 1866. He first gives it the name “mongolism” for the physical characteristics the children with this syndrome have – round shaped face and almond shaped eyes. Almost a century later additional chromosome is discovered, this being the reason for the condition and in 1965, the chromosome anomaly is officially named Down Syndrome.

Contrary to the mass understandings, the children with this genetic anomaly, do not always have mental delays. Sometimes there are heart problems and low muscle tonus, but these problems can be overcome with medication and physiotherapy. The children with Down Syndrome are usually kind and smiley.

Did you know that the famous people with Down Syndrome or their relatives are:

  • Pascal Duquenne – actor, winner of the “Best Actor” award at the Cannes Film Festival in 1996 for his role in the movie “The Eight Day”.
  • Anne de Gaulle – the youngest daughter if Charles de Gaulle, French general and politician, president of France between 1959-1969.
  • Karen Gaffney – para Olympic, swimmer and president of the Karen Gaffney Foundation, who fights for the rights of people with special needs. She is the first living person with Down Syndrome to receive an honorary doctorate degree.
  • Charles Waring Darwin – son of Charles Darwin
  • Elizabeth – sister of actress Eva Longoria
  • Diondra – sister of actor Jamie Foxx
  • Oliver – son of Damon Hill

Do you know a person with Down?

This year marks the 10 anniversary of World Down Syndrome Day. Karin Dom Foundation, Varna, undertakes a campaign under the title “What People with Down Syndrome Can Do” in which we give our audience specially designed emoticons resembling the faces of children with the syndrome. Everybody who wants to join the campaign, can write in the blank space above the emoticon “what people with Down Syndrome can do” or color the emoticons and email it to us at

That way, more people will be interested in the condition, as well as educating themselves on the subject. It is important to know exactly what these children can do in order to know how to treat them properly.

How to participate – brief instructions

Download file EMOTICONS FOR COLORING here (pdf file) – print, color, include children, family and friends!


Download file EMOTICONS “I CAN” here (word file) – fill the space above the faces with your personal statement.


Send your files and /or photo of your drawings at

We will review all received files and will publish them in short terms. Let’s together help the vast community to know the abilities of people with Down Syndrome and to treat the children and their families with understanding and support.

Строим новия терапевтичен и образователен комплекс във Варна

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