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June 2021 Edition
Kia ora koutou,

Welcome to the June edition of the WDSA newsletter.

The weather over the last few weeks has been a helpful reminder that Winter is upon us. It's is around this time of year that I finally give up on my underperforming vegetable patch, pull out the winter woolies and look forward to a few days tucked up in front of a good movie. Actually, the movie doesn't have to be all that good. 

It has been yet another busy three months for the WDSA Committee since I last wrote. We have held events across the region to celebrate World Down Syndrome Day including the WDSA annual disco, rolled out new WDSA training for siblings and care providers, hosted coffee catch ups at our homes or local venues and met with a range of stakeholders on behalf of our community. All the while our fundraising machine has been chugging along to ensure that we can continue to support you.

The WDSA Committee met earlier this week to connect about what we had been working on and start thinking about a future without James Webber and Deborah Jones. We are going to miss them as friends as well as their huge contribution to our community. We invite you to say thanks in person by coming along to our Annual General Meeting later this month.

In this edition:
•    Fundraising
•    Events
•    Notice Board

As always please get in touch at if you have suggestions or ideas.

Ngā mihi,
WDSA Annual General Meeting
WDSA Annual General Meeting
Saturday 19 June from 7.30pm until 9.00pm
79A Copeland St, Epuni, Wellington 5011, New Zealand 

Come along to our annual event to hear updates from the Committee as well as our guest speaker, Nathan Mudge, from the Up Down Project.

With James and Deborah stepping down we will be calling for new people to join the committee or be a friend of the committee.

Click here for more information.
Getting a Break Workshop
Wednesday 9 June from 9.30am - 2.30pm
Upper Hutt Cosmopolitan Club, 11 Logan Street, Upper Hutt
Free thanks to funding from Te Pou (Lunch provided)

Parent to Parent and Care Matters are proud to present this new workshop which looks at how new funding flexibility can be used to go beyond traditional forms of respite to create tailor-made breaks for you and your whanau. All family members are welcome

Limited spaces available. Click here to register. Contact Sue Trueman or 027 808 3947 for more information
Brain and Gut Health for People with Down Syndrome
Tuesday 29 June 2021 at 730pm (45 minutes)
Zoom details: or click here to visit our Facebook page

The WDSA is pleased to host Andrea Simonlehner's FREE online workshop on the science based research connecting what we eat with brain and gut health.
Fundraising Round Up
An enormous shout out to Ruth Coard for her tireless fundraising efforts as well as all the generous people and businesses who have donated to our cause. This year we have raised $3,007 from donations and $3,821 from fundraising. Thank you all so much for your generosity!!
EVENTS ... we love a good get together!

NZDSA Youth Development Camp 2021
19 - 21 November 2021
Vaughan Park Retreat Centre, Auckland.

The NZDSA is proud to sponsor this years youth development camp. It is an opportunity for youth to form friendships and have experiences that will help them to become more independent. Two spaces have been kindly reserved for the WDSA. 
•  One youth or young adult who has higher support needs to attend with a parent or primary carer, OR
• Two youths/young adults who are independent, can self-manage and would not require a parent or primary carer to attend with them.

More information is available in the Autumn Chat21 newsletter. Also you can click here to listen to Luka talk about how much fun he had at camp.

NZDSA members over the age of 18 must register their interest with Bridie at or call 02108955541 by 13 June 21. There is an option for non-members to pay $50 to attend. 

Special Needs Children Parties (Free Bowling Tickets)
Autism NZ have very kindly shared 30 tickets for WDSA members to attending a bowling party. Please check out one of two events near you.

Saturday 12 June from 11am until 12 noon
Strike Lower Hutt, 399 Hutt Rd, Lower Hutt

Sunday 13 June from 10am until 11am
North City Ten Pin, 35 Kenepuru St, Porirua

Please email James at for bowling tickets with your contact details and postal address. More information is available here on the Facebook page
Young Ones Catch Up
Sunday 25 July from 11am until 2pm
Waterloo Playcentre, Waterloo, Lower Hutt, 5011

Join Ruth and the team at the Waterloo Playcentre for a chance to catch up while the children roam inside or outside within a gated area. Click here for more information.
Coming Soon ...

•   Be ready to bowl on up to an event at Master Bowl in Masterton during the July school holidays. Date TBC. Contact Bridie at for more information.

•   WDSA recently ran a great catch up at Owhiro Bay School. There was lots of space to run around and food to eat. Look out for more regular events like this through out the year.

•   Click here to read our blog about the first WDSA sibling support workshop. It was great to see Sinead's idea come to fruition for 10 siblings. Thanks to our guest speaker Georgina Kirk and Boxylox for the koha.

•  Click here to read Tessa Haanen's blog about the Viva Social Club's annual camp earlier this year. Twelve members set off for Kaitoke where they enjoyed singalongs, outdoor activities and a talent show.

•  Click here to read about the WDSA's recent education workshop for carers and teacher aids of people with down syndrome. Topics covered behaviour, inclusion, maths, sports and technology. Further reference information and links available on the blog. A thank you to all those involved, notably the Webber family.


•    Click here for the Autumn Chat21 newsletter
•    Click here to view NZDSAs library of online resources including a new video and booklet on transitioning to school

•    The Mad Butcher would like to offer YOU the chance to win a $10,000 donation for a New Zealand charity of your choice. Click here to fill out your nomination. 

•    The Mad Butcher would like to offer YOU the chance to win a $10,000 donation for a New Zealand charity of your choice. Click here to fill out your nomination. 

Ted Talks - "Do we really want a world without Down Syndrome"
•    Click here to listen to Chessie Henry’s experience growing up with her brother Rufus who has Down Syndrome.

The WDSA Committee is made up entirely of volunteers.

We need help with administration, event coordination, IT or general governance.  

We are also looking for help applying for grants and funding to continue our work in the Wellington community

Copyright © 2021 Wellington Down Syndrome Association, All rights reserved.

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