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July 2022 Edition
Kia ora koutou

And just like that, it's term 3 already! We hope those of you with school-aged children had a good break.

Saturday's (TOMORROW!) the big day - we're gearing up for a great Mid Winter Christmas Party. We can't wait to see all your faces, it's been far too long. Santa's primed for the visit and has left a message for all your tamariki here

Also this month: 

Selena and the WDSA Committee
WDSA Mid Winter Christmas

This Saturday (tomorrow)! If you still haven't RSVP'ed to this event, click here to let us know you're coming. Or respond via Facebook.

After two long years of hiatus, we're coming back with a vengeance to hold the (mid-Winter) Christmas party to end all Christmas parties. Don your festive Christmas jumpers or anything-goes fancy dress and dust off your blue suedes as we come together to celebrate.

The committee will put on a spread, including some traditional Christmas treats, plus we'll have face painting and other entertainment to make sure everyone has a great time. Carey-Ann's put in a call to the Big Man in Red who's promised to make an appearance and there will be prizes for the best jumper and fancy dress.

Please bring yourselves and a named gift ($10 limit please) for your kid(s - big and little) to fill Santa's sack.

1pm-4pm, Saturday 30 July
Knox Church
574 High Street
Lower Hutt
STRIVE Afternoon Tea Club

Come and join the STRIVE team for a fun social hour. This social gathering is for youth and adults with Down syndrome.

4pm, Saturday 30 July
Hosted online via Zoom 
Meeting ID: 814 9749 4569
Passcode: 148149

It's an exciting time for our community as Whaikaha - Ministry of Disabled People launched earlier this month. It's an important milestone, the first step in a long journey to true transformation for disabled people across all aspects of their life. 

To find out more, visit or watch the welcome from the new Minister for Disability Issues, Poto Williams.

IHC'S National Photography Competition Capture the Moment

People aged 13 and over with an intellectual disability, or an intellectual disability and autism, can enter this competition. Photographers can enter one photo each based on the theme 'in your community' – this could be at the park, the beach, of somebody they know, eating an ice cream – anything as long as it follows the theme.

Photographers have until 31 July 2022 to submit their entries online. Photos can be black and white or colour and are limited to one entry per photographer.

The three judges; Bridgit Anderson, Dame Denise L’Estrange-Corbet and Mark Coote will complete their judging online in August 2022 and select 30 finalists which will include first, second and third place winners as well as a Youth Award winner:

First place:          $2,500
Second place:     $1,500
Third place:         $1,000
Youth Award:       $1,500

All 30 finalists' photographs will also be exhibited at FOTO FEST from 30 September to 7 October 2022 in Hastings. All photographs will be available for sale with 100% of the sale proceeds going to the artist. 

(Images can be submitted without being framed, however, if a photographer is selected as a finalist, they will need to mount and / or frame their photo for exhibition).

Read more & register here.


The winners for the 2022 IHC Art Awards have just been announced. Check out the pop-up gallery of the top 100 works at 57 Willis St, Wellington. Huge congratulations to all the winners!
Future Ready

Future Ready, an awesome new website aiming to help support young people with disabilities through their transition from school, has just launched. It was developed by not-for-profit organisation, Yes Disability and I.Lead, and co-designed by young people with disabilities to meet a need for centralised, useful information and nationwide resources that are easily accessible online. 

The website is aimed towards young people, with the hopes that parents, educators and others will find the directory and resources helpful in supporting their young person on their transition journey.

Care Matters Workshop: Enabling Good Lives Principles & Approach in Action

NZDSA and Care Matters are pleased to be inviting parents and whānau to register for this self-directed online learning course.

There are still spaces available so register ASAP so that you don’t miss the opportunity to explore, learn and connect with others as you discover and personalise what Enabling Good Lives (EGL) means for you and your family.  

For more information & to register, click here.


Auckland Down Syndrome Association: Success in School for Children Who Learn Differently

Registrations are now open for ASDA's next course. This is a two-day ONLINE workshop for SENCOs, teachers, teacher aides, Outreach teachers, parents and anyone involved in educating young people with Down syndrome and other learning difficulties.

The line-up of presenters is second to none - with many well-known professionals who are highly dedicated to our young learners, along with three adults with DS who share their school experiences. Topics covered include:

  • Inclusion - Dr Jude MacArthur
  • Learning Profile of Students with Down Syndrome - Kirsten McDonald
  • Behaviour - Arul Hamill
  • Friendships - Fehm Hussain
  • Numeracy - Dr Rhonda Faragher & Margi Leech
  • Literacy - Dr Sally Clendon
  • Using Visuals - Fiona Kenworthy
  • Collaboration for Success - IEPs - Andrea Smart (MoE)

Please contact Paula or call 09 527 0060 if you would like help to contact your school.

The course costs $300 per person for schools and $100 for families of people with Down syndrome in New Zealand. Wellington Down Syndrome Association has funds available for family members interested in attending. Email us for more information.

8.45am-2.30pm, 8 & 9 August


Sexuality & Intellectual Disability

Family Planning are offering this free workshop for whānau and caregivers that focuses on what whānau and guardians can do to support their loved ones in their sexual and reproductive wellbeing. 
The workshop will be 1.5 hours long and will be held across multiple dates:

7pm, 5 September
6pm, 3 November

Register at


Network of Expertise - Making Sense of Literacy Workshop

The Network of Expertise aim is to develop a network to connect teachers and kaiako, to build a shared collective identity for ongoing mutual learning to build capability and is led by Dr Maree Kirk. To find out more visit

7 Sept, 9.00am-3.15pm
Level 2/19 Market Grove
Lower Hutt
  • Did you know everyone in New Zealand is eligible for free COVID-19 Rapid Antigen Tests (RAT Tests)? Click here for more.
  • Speaking of free stuff, all NZ children aged 3-12 are now able to get a free flu vaccine. Contact your GP or local health centre for more.
  • Awhi has published a piece on 'Everything you need to know about the Ongoing Resourcing Scheme (ORS)'. Read it here
  • The NZDSA is currently running its annual telephone fundraising campaign, Southern Stars, to raise awareness and to support its ongoing work.
The WDSA Committee is made up entirely of volunteers.
We'd love to connect with members of the community who can spare a few hours to help here and there. If that sounds like you, sign up to our Friends of the Committee Facebook group.
Copyright © 2022 Wellington Down Syndrome Association, All rights reserved.

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