Our stories

The first ever Barbie Doll with Down's Syndrome

Model Ellie Goldstein who has featured on the cover of Vogue and Glamour talks about the importance of people with Down Syndrome being represented “people need to see more people like me out there in the world.”


Hannah lands dream job as Zumba instructor

Hannah was the first person with Down's Syndrome to qualify as a Zumba instructor in the UK, since then she has run Zumba sessions at our family Chatterbox event and for our +17s members. Now she has secured her dream job as a Zumba instructor at Pure Gym in Tyldesley!!

Congratulations Hannah, we can't wait to have you back teaching Zumba at our Chatterbox event in October!

Read the full article below:


First actor with Down's Syndrome to be nominated for TV Choice Best Actor award

Daniel Laurie has made the final stages of the Best Actor category in this year's TV Choice Awards for his performance as Reggie in Call the Midwife.

Click the link below to support and vote for Daniel to win the award! (Best Actor category is on page 11)


Sky to air documentary about Otto Baxter - the first film Director with Down's Syndrome

Filming is underway on a feature-length documentary Otto Baxter: Not A F*ing Horror Story, which details the making of a 30-minutes film by Otto Baxter, who has Down Syndrome called The Puppet Asylum.


Kate's Interview with Kevin Kilbane

One of our members, Kate Goodrich, had an interview with Kevin Kilbane.

You can hear it at conversation.

Timothy Broadhurst and Timpson win top prizes at National Employment Awards

Huge congratulations to Timothy Broadhurst who has won the coveted David Grainger Award at the British Association of Supported Employment Awards. Not only did Timothy triumph, so did his employers, Timpson Ltd who won first prize at this year’s Employer Practice winner. Timpson are the multi-national retailer who have their HQ in Wythenshawe, Manchester.

Tim was presented with his award by Coronation Street actor, Liam Barstow and Diane Lightfoot, Director Policy and Communications at United Response.

From his first meeting with our WorkFit service, Tim displayed his enthusiasm and motivation. It was clear that his independence was very important to him and that his goal of securing paid work would allow him greater choice and control and the opportunity to consider independent living. His comment “I don’t want to be stuck with my mum and dad all my life” is one that will resonate with many people!

See full report

Tim's experience at Timpson's also made BBC Northwest news

Bachofner Family Prenatal Diagnosis

When SMDSSG members Tom Bachofner, 38, and his wife Karen’s unborn child was diagnosed with Down’s syndrome, they didn’t question whether they’d go ahead with the pregnancy.


Todd becomes the first fully-qualified scaffolder with Down's Syndrome in Britain!


Toni Box

Did you know that 76% of people with Down Syndrome have trouble with the onset of sleep? I know so many people in our community who struggle with this! A while ago the Tonie box was recommended to me after it revolutionised a friends’ bedtime routine. It also worked for us; the box is so amazing.

It has characters that sit on top from well loved books and films, and it reads songs and stories for 30mins as they drift of to sleep.

We have been lucky enough to secure one of these boxes and three characters (Toy Story, Monsters Inc and one you can record on yourself, read a book
sing a song whatever you like!) to lend out to our community!

You would keep the box for two weeks and see what happens. Then we have a special discount code that we can share with you should you like to purchase one. Not only that but for every purchase made, the company are donating money back to us as a charity 😊

Please let me know on esther@dsmanchester.org.uk if you would like to book the box out popping TONIE BOX in the subject line of the e-mail, I will be starting a rota and co-ordinating it.

You can have a look at the Tonie boxes on their website:

We also get 15% off Toniebox Starter sets and Tonies bundles on tonies.com website, ask Esther or Emily for the discount code!

They will donate £10 back to the charity for every purchase made!

Dear Rosie

Dear Rosie,

I would like to say thank you to you because you have taught me how to be a more understanding, well-rounded person. When you were born, despite how proud I was, I hate to admit that I was nervous, mainly because I did not understand the learning disability you have – Down's syndrome. You have taught me that having a learning disability is nothing to worry about and I also now see everybody as loving human beings no matter what learning disability or physical disability they may or may not have. I would also like to thank you for understanding me. Although you may not be able to communicate through fluent English with me, I really appreciate you smiling with me when I'm happy and comforting me when I'm sad. As well as that, pictures, videos and the presence of you make a lot of people happy. So, thank you from myself and a lot of other people.