Silicon Valley Down Syndrome Network

What does SVDSN provide?

The Silicon Valley Down Syndrome Network (SVDSN) is a network of families with children born with Down syndrome. We come from all walks of life, and our common goal is to provide a community of support for individuals with Down syndrome and their families. All of SVDSN's events and activities are organized by volunteers from the group and funded by donations. Depending on the resources and funds available on that year, events and activities vary each year. 

Support

  • New parent packets and home visits
  • Family Scholarships
  • Parent Education Support
  • Accompanying Parent's IEP meetings
  • Siblings Circle (coming in the future)

Advocacy

  • Bay Area Buddy Walk® 
  • Community Awareness
  • Public Outreach & National Networking
  • Operation Housecall

Education

  • Conferences
  • Parent Education Programming
  • Community resource library support

Community

  • Holiday & Spring Party
  • Monthly Family Dinner
  • Mom's Night Out, Dad's Night Out
  • Baby & Toddler Playgroups
  • Kids Field Trips
  • Music Therapy & Yoga and Dance Class (currently inactive due to low attendances)
  • Local Partnerships (Animal Assisted Hapiness)

Support


First Connect

SVDSN is offering new and expectant parents of babies with Down syndrome the opportunity to connect with trained parent mentors who share the same or similar life circumstances. The new parent will receive support and guidance from the paired parent mentor the first year following birth.

We also offer a monthly support meeting to new parents (child age 0 to 1) where they can connect with fellow new parents. We also invite various guest speaker (speech pathologists, occupational therapists, older kids parents) to cover different topics each month.

For any questions about this program, contact our Family Support Coordinator (svdsnwelcome@gmail.com).


Parent Education Support

We are parents of children with Down syndrome who have found the support of other parents to be priceless in navigating our children's educational journeys and the IEP process. Each child with DS has her/his own unique educational needs. While we may not be trained advocates and lawyers, we are here to share information, resources, and our experiences to help you become a better advocate for your child. We meet the 1st Wednesday of every month from 6/7 pm (PST) on Zoom to chat with you about your IEP questions and concerns. We also accompany your IEP meeting if requested and if our team member is available. If you need help to prepare for your child's IEP, complete this form and our team will contact you. 

Monthly zoom meeting invites will be sent to registered SVDSN members. To contact the parent Education Support team, please email: svdsnedu@gmail.com.


Advocacy and Public Outreach

Here are some of the programs we have been offering.  

Operation Housecall Program

What is Operation Housecall Program?

Click here! 

How can I sign up?

Become SVDSN member and look for the announcement from SVDSN Programming for the family to sign up in August. 

Operation Housecall Picnic

Each year around May, SVDSN hosts OH picnic to show our appreciation to Stanford Graduates students with our participating SVDSN families. You can come and join the picnic to chat with our program director to find out more about this program.

 


Bay Area Buddy Walk ®

Make a Big Difference to our community!

Bay Area Buddy Walk ® is organized by volunteers from our group. If you would like to join our Buddy Walk Committee to help plan and organize, please contact bayareabuddywalk@gmail.com.   

2019 Bay Area Buddy Walk ® event photo - courtesy by Marni Rae Photography

Education 

One of our focus is to provide support for both parent and self-advocate education. This includes: workshops, special topics (special needs trusts/conservator-ship, financial planning, IEP's etc), and tutoring and teaching programs that work directly with self advocates. Depending on the program/workshop, we sometimes subsidize program fee for parent/self-advocate to attend, or we work with other organization to customize the program that fits to our needs and bring the program just for our group. 

Parent Sharing

What is Parent Sharing? 

We will invite SVDSN parents to share their experience and knowledge around a selected topic that will be highlighted each month. Scheduled Parent Sharing Session invite will be available for registered SVDSN members. 

Ready or Not Transition Group

The Ready or Not (RoN) Transition Group is a group of parents supporting each other through the process of planning the transition to adulthood for their children with Down syndrome. The group meets monthly to discuss topics such as conservatorship and alternatives, financial planning, medical transition, housing options, post-secondary education, employment and independent living skills. In addition to sharing books and information at meetings, RoN maintains an online drive with additional resources. Future plans include hosting guest speakers on financial planning and post-secondary education opportunities. RoN is open to everyone but is primarily geared toward parents with teenagers.

See upcoming event on home page for the meeting details.


Learning Without Tears

What is Learning Without Tears?

SVDSN subsdise 50% of the LWT workshop costs for registered SVDSN members. We try to register as group to take additional group discount. Look for the future workshop announcement from SVDSN programming for the instruction of how to register together.

 

Community

We provide various platforms for our families to meet and network, build friendship, exchanging information. We also provide different programs for our self-advocates when we have enough interests to bring those programs, activities.

Monthly Family Dinner

We usually meet third Saturday at the restaurant convenient for most anticipating participants. This is a casual dinner (each family pay their own meal) to get to know each other, especially welcoming new family who just joined us. We are currently re-organizing this event and plan to resume in the near future. 


Annual Holiday Party

Event Date - Normally early December.

We typically have our Party in two different locations, one is in Mountain View and the other one in Morgan Hill. Great to network with other families and celebrate holiday spirit. Click here to watch promo video. 



Annual Spring Fling

Event Date - Normally late March or early April.

Perfect family event filled with fun and crafts, games, egg hunt. Build friendship with other families, Mr. Bunny and enjoy the visit from Canine Companions for Independence. Click here to watch promo video. 


Super Sprouts (Play Group)

Super Sprouts is a play group for age 1 to 5 years old.

This play group meets monthly with various formats to connect. If you would like to join this play group, please e-mail to svdsnwelcome@gmail.com.


Taiko Drumming for Down Syndrome

Inclusive taiko (Japanese-drumming) workshop for people with Down syndrome and their families in collaboration with the world-renowned taiko drumming group San Jose Taiko.

San Jose Taiko has hired an occupational therapist, Sydney Shiroyama, to supervise taiko drumming lessons for self advocates to bring about maximum benefit to participants. Sydney has studied the beneficial effects of incorporating music into OT sessions and is developing exercises in an inclusive setting for individuals with Down syndrome. Check out future classes information on Taiko For All page and watch our promo video!  



Yoga Class

Yoga wih Ms. Jessica Zander (following Yoga for the Special Child methods). (Due to the low attendances, currently this class is inactive). We hope to gain enough interests from SVDSN members and bring back the class in the near future.  Click here to watch promo video.



SVDSN Dance Class

Dance class with Ms. Melaena and Ms. Sarah. We have two different classes by age group. We have a show case at North Valley Holiday Party. (Due to low attendances, currently this class is inactive). We hope to gain enough interests from SVDSN members to bring back the class in the near future. Click here to watch promo video.



Mom's Night Out / Dad's Night Out

Whenever and whoever has itch to gather fellow moms or dads to go out and connect, share laughter and tears along our journey, this event happens! Registered SVDSN members will coordinate and schedule the event using our Social Forum on our Membership Page.


SVDSN Photo Gallery

Just to reward people like you who scroll this far :)   Click here to view SVDSN Photo Gallery! 

Our Community Partners

Family photographer with 15 years experience as an Aide with special needs kiddos!

Our Fiscal agent 



Silicon Valley Down Syndrome Network

 SVDSN is a program of Valley Medical Center Foundation who is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. 2400 Clove Drive, San Jose CA 95128

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